Ukrainian Olga Kharlan during a press conference at the world fencing championships, in Milan, Friday July 28, 2023. LUCA BRUNO / AP
Ukrainian fencer Olga Kharlan, disqualified from the World Fencing Championships on Thursday for refusing to shake hands with her Russian opponent, will be guaranteed a place at the 2024 Paris Olympics, IOC President Thomas Bach announced in a letter broadcast by Ukrainian Sports Minister Vadym Guttsait.
“In view of your particular situation, the International Olympic Committee will allocate you an additional quota for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games in the event that you are unable to qualify in the remaining period”, says this letter, addressed to Olga Kharlan, the authenticity of which was confirmed to Agence France-Presse by an IOC spokesperson. The disqualification of the athlete the day before cost him very precious points in the race for the Olympics.
Olga Kharlan’s suspension lifted
In addition, Olga Kharlan’s suspension has been lifted, the International Fencing Federation (FIE) announced on Friday, allowing her to compete in the team event from Saturday at the Fencing Worlds. The FIE has also amended its rules, which no longer oblige you to exchange a handshake with your opponent, indicated Bruno Gares, member of the FIE executive committee, during a press conference.
Russia on Friday accused the IOC of acting ” in the interest “ of Ukraine, after the international body asked the federations to show “sensitivity” towards Ukrainian athletes.
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