Heart-wrenching reaction to Russian athletes in Paralympics

A decision by the International Paralympic Committee on Wednesday to allow Russians and Belarussians to compete as “neutrals athletes” generated a heart-wrenching reply only hours after it was announced.

Russian athletes had already been slated to compete as RPC, short for Russian Paralympic Committee, as punishment for the state-sponsored doping scandal at the 2014 Sochi Olympics and a subsequent cover-up.

The IPC added more restrictions on the Russians when the Paralympics open on Friday. Belarus was sanctioned for its part in aiding Russia with the invasion and war against Ukraine.

But there was no expulsion. And that hit a nerve.

At a news conference in Beijing hours after the decision, a reporter who said he worked for the Kyiv Post asked IPC president Andrew Parsons what he would say to the family of young biathlete Yevhen Malyshev.

Malyshev was killed this week in Ukraine, but the exact circumstances of his death are unclear. The International Biathlon Union said Wednesday he “died this week serving in the Ukrainian military.”

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