IOC refuses to lift suspension of boxing body; writes letter listing its concerns

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has decided not to lift the suspension of the International Boxing Association’s (IBA) recognition and involve it in conducting boxing competitions at the Paris Olympics in 2024.

Noting that the IBA has not done enough to assuage its concerns over governance and transparency, the IOC Executive Board in its meeting on Tuesday decided to go without IBA and also sent another communique to the boxing body listing its concerns.

“As a consequence, the IOC Executive Board (EB) has sent another letter listing its concerns to IBA, following the one delivered in September 2022, informing it that the drastic change of culture requested by the IOC to lift the suspension of IBA’s recognition has not been implemented,” the IOC said in a statement on its website.

“As a result, the IOC is not in a position today to reverse its stance with regard to the suspension of IBA’s recognition,” the statement said.

In the letter, the IOC also listed areas in which IBA has to work.

“The issue is not about the sport of boxing or boxers, but IBA and its practices and activities. While some indications concerning the reorganisation of the administration of boxing were received, there are multiple signals that the drastic change of culture requested by the IOC in order to lift the suspension of IBA’s recognition has not been implemented. As a result, the IOC is not in a position today to reverse its stance with regard to the suspension of IBA’s recognition,” the IOC said in the letter.

“During the years of monitoring, the IOC has been acting in the best interests of the boxing community (including athletes, coaches, judges, and referees). This is why the Olympic boxing tournament could take place at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 while the recognition of IBA was suspended.

“The IOC will continue to monitor the evolution of IBA’s practices and activities as well as of the boxing community at large, and, on the basis of the developments, will consider taking a decision regarding IBA’s recognition at the appropriate time,” the letter said.

The letter also informed that the IOC will go ahead with the qualification programme for boxing at the Paris 2024 Games. The IOC also said at this moment it will not be in a position to recommend boxing’s inclusion in the sports programme for the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

“Boxing is currently not included in the initial sports programme of the Olympic Games Los Angeles 2028. If a decision had to be taken today regarding the Olympic Games Los Angeles 2028, the IOC EB would not be able to recommend the IOC Session to include boxing in the sports programme under the authority of the IBA as IBA has not demonstrated that it has successfully addressed the ongoing concerns around its governance, its financial transparency and sustainability and the integrity of its refereeing and judging processes,” the IOC informed in the letter.

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