The 137th IOC Session, set to take place from 10 to 12 March 2021, originally in Athens, Greece, will now be held virtually. This decision was taken by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board (EB) during its meeting today.
The decision was taken in order to respect the strict measures being implemented now all over the world to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and bring the number of cases down.
This will be the second IOC Session to be held remotely, after the 136th IOC Session in July 2020. The Session agenda will include, among other topics, the presidential election, in which IOC President Thomas Bach will stand unopposed for the IOC Presidency. Full details on the timings and programme of the Session will follow in due course.
The IOC EB also decided to propose to the IOC Session in March that Athens should be selected to host the IOC Session in 2025.
“The IOC would like to thank its Greek partners, in particular the Hellenic Olympic Committee, for their understanding and the great work they have done in preparation for the IOC Session,” the IOC President said.
The IOC Executive Board is still very much concerned about the lack of progress in the requested reforms of the International Boxing Association (AIBA) regarding management, governance, refereeing and other issues. These concerns will be relayed to AIBA.
Serious concerns were also raised about the apparent weakening of the anti-doping rules and other governance issues within the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF). The fact that the IWF is looking to change the anti-doping rules approved by the IOC as part of its qualification system for Tokyo 2020, with the qualifications already underway and without any consultation with the IOC, was deemed worrying by the IOC EB.
The IOC will request a clear explanation from the IWF, and will have to discuss this issue again during the next EB meeting in February.
Italian National Olympic Committee
Following discussions with the Italian National Olympic Committee (CONI) and the Italian government over the past two years, the IOC was informed that a decree was finally adopted on 26 January 2021 by the Italian Council of Ministers to ensure that CONI can fully perform its role and operations as an IOC-recognised National Olympic Committee (NOC) in an autonomous manner, as per the Olympic Charter and as requested by the IOC and CONI. It is therefore understood that the situation is now resolved.