On 15 May, the Education, Youth, Culture and Sport European Council was held in Brussels. Sport Ministers discussed the respect for human rights in the organisation of major international sports events and the participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes.
On human rights in international sports events, the Sports Ministers agreed that human rights protection should be at the heart of awarding, preparing and delivering major international sports events. This process should consider all stakeholders in the sporting community, such as athletes, referees, volunteers, supporters but also the companies involved in the organisation of the event, the Ministers stated.
With regards to the participation of Ukrainian sport and the participation of Russian and Belarussian athletes, Andriy Chesnokov, Ukrainian Deputy Minister of Youth and Sport depicted the situation of Ukrainian sport and noted the violation of the human rights of Ukrainian athletes in the current context of Russian aggression. Representatives of each Member State expressed their opinions, sometimes diverging, on the potential participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes in the Paris 2024 Games. All of them however agreed on the need to support Ukrainian athletes.
The French Minister for Sport expressed the objective of giving an European dimension too the next Olympic and Paralympic Games by highlighting the associated values and symbols and by working on popular enthusiasm, notably through European volunteering. Additionally, EU Sports Ministers have also addressed the representation of EU Member States in the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the Macolin Convention during the EU Sport Council.