International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach responded to Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova’s harsh words citing the rhetoric as a “new low.”

Zakharova said, “The IOC’s decisions are illegal, unfair and unacceptable. We are appalled by the unprecedented discriminatory conditions imposed by the IOC on Russian athletes. These statements show how far the IOC has strayed from its stated principles and has turned to racism and neo-Nazism.”

She made the statement on Tuesday, in response to the IOC which barred Russian athletes from taking part in the opening ceremony of the Paris 2024 Olympics on July 26.

The IOC also criticized the Kremlin for planning to hold its own “Friendship Games” to rival those held in the French capital.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov responded saying, “it’s intimidation of athletes and it completely undermines the authority of the IOC. It is the destruction of the ideal of Olympism.”

Both parties are accusing the other of politicizing the Olympics.

Meanwhile, Russian rhetoric speaks to the West boycotting the Russian-led Friendship Games, but Russia claims to rise above a Paris boycott. Perhaps Vladimir Putin does not understand that while experiencing a ban, a boycott is a moot point.

Zakharova has been known to make outrageous statements including referring to NATO as cockroaches that disappear when you turn the light on.

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