The International Canoe Federation (ICF) board has made the decision to allow eligible Russian and Belarusian athletes who are not in support of their State’s actions in Ukraine to compete as individual neutral athletes.

The decision was taken after extensive consultations within the international canoeing community and consideration of concerns expressed by event organisers.  

An independent panel will be set up to consider all applications from Russian and Belarusian athletes wishing to compete as neutral athletes. The timeline for their inclusion in competition will be determined once this independent panel has established the rules and regulations required to consider athlete eligibility and following confirmation of anti-doping procedures by the International Testing Agency (ITA). 

The ICF has acted on concerns raised by key stakeholders and organising committees to adopt additional measures for the safe organisation of competitions and the safety of athletes. 

The ICF Board will maintain the ban on all Russian and Belarussian canoe officials. The officials will not be allowed to sit in any official capacity or at ICF event. 

The ICF's decision demonstrates a commitment to upholding the principles of sport while condemning the actions of the Russian and Belarusian governments in Ukraine. The ICF will continue to work towards supporting the canoeing family of Ukraine while ensuring that the autonomy of sport is respected. 

 ICF Board Statement on the eligibility of Russian and Belarusian Athletes to Compete as Individual Neutral Athletes