Lord Killanin, president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), said tonight that "it would be wrong to pre-judge" an American resolution regarding the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow before it comes before the full IOC on Monday.But Killanin added that so far he has seen no reason to alter his earlier statement that moving the games is "legally and technically impossible."
Shortly after arriving here to preside over what he called "one of the most critical sessions of the IOC since its foundation in 1894," Killanin told a news conference that he would have little to say at this time about the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) resolution calling for the games to be shifted from Moscow, postponed or canceled because of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. The resolution is to be presented and debated in closed session.
A USOC delegation had sought to present its resolution -- hammered out at the request of President Carter and unanimously approved by the USOC Executive Board last month -- to the IOC Executive Committee at its meeting on Friday.
The committee will receive the USOC delegation, but Killanin said that "they should see the whole session" as well. This was scheduled for Monday morning. That afternoon the Moscow Organizing Committee is to make a progress report on its preparations for the games.
Killanin said he expected a good turnout -- 65 to 70 of the 89 IOC members -- at the session here preceding the 13th Winter Games, which begin next Wednesday.
He said on arrival here from his home in Dublin that he would "only be adding to the confusion" if he made any hasty comments on the conflicting statements recently by various Olympic, government and sports federation officials.
When pressed by reporters, Killanin said that his opinion of early last month that moving the Games is "legally and technically impossible" still stands.
"We have awarded the Games to Moscow. We have a signed document, which is, to my mind, a binding document," said Killanin, who has headed the IOC since 1972. "It is a letter of agreement, to be absolutely precise . . . We have a moral and, . . . I think, a legal obligation."
But Killanin, known as a shrewd negotiator and diplomat behind closed doors, carefully left himself room to maneuver.
"I want to be very careful . . . People make statements and get themselves into position from which there is no withdrawal," he said. "I, as an old soldier, made sure that I always had a way out, a way to escape. I think one wants to be very careful not to commit oneself -- politically, diplomatically, procedurally or tactically -- without being able to make sure that one keeps all options open."
Killanin denied reports that he had asked to see President Carter or that the president had asked to see him.
In response to a question about governmental pressure being exerted on certain national Olympic committees to withdraw from the Games if they are held July 19-Aug. 3 in Moscow, Killanin said:
"I think in certain areas the government may make suggestions to Olympic committees . . . But I would like to say as a democrat, with a little 'd,' that we should not be dictated to by governments in where we go to."
Asked to comment on a statement attributed to Soviet IOC member Valeri Smirnov that an Olympics without U.S. participation would be "unthinkable," Killanin said only that such games "would be very, very, sad."
President Carter has suggested that the United States and other nations not send athletes to Moscow if Soviet troops are not fully withdrawn from Afghanistan by Feb. 20 and the IOC refuses to move, postpone or cancel the games.
Meanwhile, the latest chapter in a longer-running IOC controversy began today when five Taiwanese athletes and two officials were refused accreditation at the Olympic Village as representing the Republic of China. a
The IOC ruled in November, in a decision upheld this week by a Swiss court, that only the People's Republic of China could compete in the Games as the Republic of China, and that Taiwan could compete only as the Taipei Olympic Committee, under a flag and anthem approved by the IOC.
The Taiwanese delegation today refused to accept credentials as Taipei, insisting on their former accreditation as the Republic of China Olympic Committee and the right to use the flag and anthem of the pre-1948 Nationalist regime of mainland China.
Twenty-eight athletes from the People's Republic of China were accredited and admitted to the Olympic Village last week.
A suit by a Taiwanese athlete against the Lake Placid Olympic Organizing Committee, requesting permission to carry his traditional flag into competition here, is pending in a New York court in nearby Plattsburgh. A ruling has been promised by the start of the Games.