PARIS: Anne Hidalgo, the mayor of Paris, changed her mind about the presence of Russian competitors at the Olympic Games in the French capital in 2024.

She told French media: “As long as Russia continues to wage war on Ukraine, I don’t want a Russian delegation at the Games. I would find that indecent. It is not possible to march as if nothing had happened, to have a delegation come to Paris, while the bombs continue to rain down on Ukraine.”

Last month Hidalgo had approved the reintegration of Russian and Belarusian athletes in 2024 “so as not to deprive them of their competition.”

However now she has had second thoughts about the compromise position being adopted by the International Olympic Committee. She suggested that any dissident Russians should be included in the refugees’ team.

Hidalgo travelled secretly to Kyiv last April to meet the city’s mayor, former boxer Vitali Klitschko, and would consider a new trip to the Ukrainian capital.