Patrick Hickey has accepted an invite to attend this month's European Games in Minsk ©Getty Images

Self-suspended former European Olympic Committees (EOC) President Patrick Hickey has accepted an invitation to attend this month's European Games in Minsk.

A spokesperson for the EOC told insidethegames the Irishman had confirmed he would travel to the Games in the Belarusian capital, which begin on June 21 and conclude on June 30.

Hickey will not be in attendance for the duration of the event, the spokesperson said.

Olympic Federation of Ireland (OFI) officials, including President Sarah Keane, questioned the decision from the EOC to invite Hickey, who removed himself from his sporting roles following his arrest on ticket scalping charges at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, to the Games in the Belarusian capital.

Keane and OFI general secretary Sarah O’Shea held talks with EOC officials, including President Janez Kocijančič, to discuss the issue.

The OFI President and chief executive Peter Sherrard had expressed their surprise at the invitation.

In a statement, the EOC said it had invited all of its former Presidents to attend, including Hickey, in a "non-operational role".

"This was also the case for the first edition of the Games and will remain the case at future editions," the EOC said.

"As such, Patrick Hickey is as welcome as any other former EOC President and guest attending the Games.

"As he is self suspended and without any cause to prevent him from going about his daily life, it would be wrong of the EOC to act in a different manner unless the situation regarding Patrick Hickey changes."

Hickey, who denies wrongdoing, is facing charges of theft, tax evasion, money-laundering and criminal association after hundreds of tickets to Olympic events at Rio 2016 were seized by police.

His trial had been due to begin in Rio in November, only to be suspended by the Brazilian Supreme Court.

It is unclear when – or if – the trial will take place.

Hickey could still return as an International Olympic Committee (IOC) member but has been replaced at both the EOC and the reformed OFI.

He led the EOC from 2006 to 2017.

The IOC Ethics Commission has still not made a decision on Hickey's status within the Olympic Movement.

He has rarely appeared in public since returning to Ireland from Brazil but he attended the 2017 and 2018 World Judo Championships, held in Budapest and Azerbaijan's capital Baku, respectively.

Hickey spearheaded the creation of the European Games during his 10-year tenure at the helm, the first edition of which was held in Baku in 2015.