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Shelf talk of Russian ban for Paris Olympics: Bach

The time is not right for a discussion of whether athletes from Russia will be permitted to compete at the 2024 Olympics in Paris, says International Olympic Committee head Thomas Bach.

"To be very clear, it's not the time yet to speak about the Olympic Games in Paris," he told reporters in Havana when asked about the possibility of excluding Russians in 2024 because of Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.

"It's way too early to speak about any kind of boycott," the IOC president said.

Bach, who won a gold medal at the 1976 Olympics as a member of the West German fencing team, said consultations were ongoing among the national Olympic committees and sporting federations regarding the international eligibility of athletes from Russia and Belarus.

The IOC launched the process in January with the aim of finding ways for Russian and Belarusian athletes to compete as neutrals.

At the end of the consultations, Bach said, the IOC will be "coming up with a recommendation."

"It's about the athletes," he emphasised.