Paralympics return in danger: Beucher: “Russia kills, rapes and destroys”

Paralympics return in danger
Beucher: “Russia kills, rapes and destroys”

At the end of September, the International Paralympic Committee surprisingly voted to allow Russian athletes back into the 2024 Games in Paris. But now there are apparently indications of unfair practices. Disabled sports director Beucher is clearly in favor of exclusion.

The admission of Russian and Belarusian athletes under a neutral flag to the 2024 Paralympics in Paris is under review again. “Events have become known,” said Friedhelm Julius Beucher, President of the German Disabled Sports Association: “It must be verified under what conditions Russia may have won nations for this position in the vote in Bahrain. That is why there will be an extraordinary conference at the beginning of March of the European Paralympic Committee, whose convocation we supported.”

According to Beucher, “There should be documents and corresponding pictures. That’s all I’ve heard so far. But everything has to be properly examined. And if necessary, the decision also has to be re-evaluated. Because if that turns out to be the case, you can’t move on to the agenda. ” Germany and other countries, especially Western ones, put up great resistance, but ultimately 74 nations voted for re-authorization and only 65 against.

Beucher takes a clear stance.

Beucher takes a clear stance.

(Photo: IMAGO/Zoonar)

There are “further questions,” explained Beucher, after the International Paralympic Committee decided with a narrow majority at the end of September that they wanted to let the athletes compete under a neutral flag despite the war in Ukraine. “The IPC has not yet answered what the criteria are,” said Beucher. “With the best will in the world, I can’t imagine how a Russian or Belarusian can be neutral at the moment.”

“No other situation than after the outbreak of war”

Beucher also reiterated his criticism of the re-admission when honoring the Para Athlete of the Year. “If we as a sport see ourselves as a major peace movement in this world, then no participants from a country that continues to kill, rape, smash and destroy fit in.”

“If you have values, you also have to live values,” Beucher continued. “I also allow everyone to interpret values. But for us in the German Disabled Sports Association it is no different to the situation after the outbreak of war.” The DBS president denounced that the war had become “even worse.”

There is also the question of how to ensure that there are proper doping controls there, said Beucher: “It’s also about fairness to our athletes, who have to consistently undergo tests, which is good. But you can’t say that about others : They couldn’t do any. If an athlete hasn’t completed enough tests to prove that he is doping-free, consequences must be drawn from that. And there can’t be any exceptions.”

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