Russia Opposes Sanctions Against Its National Sports Teams

On May 23, 2023, Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin declared that current sanctions against Russian sports teams have the goal of sullying Russia’s national identity and diminish respect for the country’s national traditions and values. 

“It seems to me that this is some sort of a strategy targeted at destroying consciousness and [national] identity, as well as respect for the traditions, values and culture of our country,” Matytsin said at a meeting with Russian Ice Hockey Federation (RHF) President Vladislav Tretiak that was live broadcasted on the Rossiya-24 television channel. “This is why we will certainly keep on fighting.” 

The Russian sports minister congratulated the way international sports organizations handled the recent boxing world championship in Uzbekistan, where athletes from Belarus and Russia were allowed to compete under their respective national flags and to the tune of their respective national anthems.

The 2023 International Boxing Association (IBA) World Boxing Championship took place in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, from April 30 to May 14.

Back in February 28, 2022, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) put forward recommendations to international sports federations to prevent athletes from Russia and Belarus from participating in international tournaments, alluding to Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine as the justification for this move.

After the IOC issued its recommendations in late February 2022, the majority of global sports federations decided to prevent athletes from Russia and Belarus from competing in all international sports tournaments.

During its session on January 25, 2023, the IOC Executive Board published a proposal to allow individual athletes from Russia and Belarus to participate in international sports tournaments, but only if they met certain conditions.  These conditions consisted of athletes from the two countries not “actively supporting” Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine and must compete under a neutral status.

One of the pettiest forms of behavior the West demonstrated in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine was the full-blown demonization of Russian culture. This showcased how immature and petty elites in the West area. Instead of analyzing the structural causes of the Russo-Ukrainian War, they preferred to engage in petty anti-Russian chauvinism. 

Honestly, if you want to know why foreign policy in the West is in such a dilapidated state, just look no further to how Westerners have acted in the aftermath of Russia’s military incursion into Ukraine.

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