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Another nation joins congress boycott over Russian participation

The Italian Gymnastics Federation announced its move in a letter

The Italian Gymnastics Federation (FGI) is the latest European body to withdraw from next month’s International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) Congress in protest at the participation of Russian delegates.

Five other countries – Lithuania, Poland, Estonia, Norway, and Ukraine – have already pulled out of the event in Istanbul on November 11 and 12.

On Wednesday, the FGI announced that it had joined them in a letter addressed to “Dear European friends of Gymnastics.”

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“The Italian Gymnastics Federation does support the line adopted by other European Gymnastics Federations to the declaration agreed by Ministers of Sport, or their equivalent, from the 25 countries of the European Union and also numerous non-European countries, with the endorsement of the Italian Olympic Committee, in total solidarity with the Ukrainian Gymnastics Federation, and does declare it will not take part in the 84th FIG Congress,” the letter said. 

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Russian gymnastics star Arina Averina.
Nations to boycott congress over Russian participation – media

The FGI said it could not take part in the congress “due to the unavailability to meet delegates from Russia and Belarus.”

It called for an end to the military conflict in Ukraine, “since only if we are all at peace can we be fully part of the great Olympic Family.”

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Norway had originally been assigned to receive the FIG Congress but gave up its hosting duties in July when it became known that Russian delegates would be allowed to attend. 

As reported by TASS, Russian Artistic Gymnastics Federation (FSGR) president Vasily Titov will travel with four other officials for the two-day event in Türkiye’s largest city. 

“The International Gymnastics Federation includes 143 countries, 130 have already registered [to participate in the congress],” Titov said after news of Italy’s withdrawal emerged. 

“This means that the congress is competent, it will take place and make all the necessary decisions.

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“Each country makes its own decision on participation. I’m sorry that our sports colleagues are trying to overly politicize the situation with the participation of the Russian and Belarusian delegations,” added Titov. 


READ MORE: Turkey to host gymnastics summit after Norway refused to allow Russians

FIG head Morinari Watanabe has insisted delegates have the right to attend as neutral representatives of the sport.

However, Russian and Belarusian gymnasts remain banned from all FIG competitions following a decision initially announced back in March. 

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https://ift.tt/R2FyiMj 12, 2022 at 09:54PM
from RT – Daily news

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