European Athletics today announces that the Paris 2020 European Athletics Championships, scheduled to take place at the Charlety Stadium from 25-30 August, have been cancelled.
The decision to cancel the championships was taken today by Paris 2020 Local Organising Committee (LOC) and Fédération Française d'Athlétisme (FFA) at an extraordinary LOC Executive Committee meeting.
This was held following an earlier meeting between the relevant French authorities. European Athletics and the Paris 2020 LOC had been evaluating all possible options for holding the championships this year as planned following a feasibility study relating to the current situation.
European Athletics, and all other relevant parties involved in the project, were subsequently informed of the decision to cancel the Paris 2020 European Athletics Championships.
The decision to cancel was driven by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the associated risks linked to the current situation, which are far from being under control, as well as the existing ban on mass gatherings in France.
An evaluation made by the FFA Medical Commission was also taken into account when considering all the potential risks for spectators and accredited persons who would attend the championships. The commission’s unfavourable opinion on this issue, delivered this week, was duly taken into account by the Paris 2020 LOC and the FFA at their meeting.
Commenting on the cancellation of the European Athletics Championships, European Athletics Interim President, Dobromir Karamarinov said: “It is with great regret that we announce the cancellation of the Paris 2020 European Athletics Championships. We had hoped in these troubled times to offer European athletes a major event to aim for at the end of this summer. Unfortunately, today we were informed by the LOC and French athletics federation that, after discussions with the relevant French national and local public health and safety authorities, they were no longer able to proceed with delivering the championships this August and were forced to cancel the event.
“Whilst we regret announcing the cancellation of our European Athletics Championships, it is worth reiterating that in these unprecedented times the health and safety of all athletics’ stakeholders including athletes, fans, officials, partners and everyone connected with the sport is paramount. We will always do what is best for the members of our athletics family and the wider public.”
The European Athletics Council will discuss this issue, together with other changes to the global athletics calendar that have been forced upon the sport due to the COVID-19 pandemic, at their next meeting which is scheduled to take place via video conference on 7-8 May.