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Duma regreats London’s decision to deny accreditation to Lukashenko

July 25, 2012, 19:56 UTC+3

The Russian State Duma Committee for CIS Affairs regrets that Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko

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MOSCOW, July 25 (Itar-Tass) — The Russian State Duma Committee for CIS Affairs regrets that Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko, who’s also the president of the National Olympic Committee of Belarus, has been denied accreditation at the London Olympic Games. "The behavior of the British authorities who have the honor to host the Olympic Games in their country has been unsportsmanlike,” the committee’s head Leonid Slutsky told journalists on Wednesday.

He said that London was turning into a European capital of double standards. “The authorities are not even trying to conceal that they grant asylum to criminals whose names are on international wanted lists. At the same time, they are banning the president of a National Olympic Committee from entering the country for the Olympics,” Slutsky emphasized.

He said that such an approach was destructive. “Belarus is a full-fledged European state. However, it still remains an outcast in the European continent. That hasn’t brought about and will never lead to any solution. It’s necessary to establish a dialogue with Minsk instead of demonstrating a baton and a whip for just another time,” Slutsky, who’s also the vice-speaker of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), went on to say. He added that Moscow would continue seeking an end to Belarus’ isolation at all international floors.

“Lukashenko is in the black list of persons who are banned to enter the European Union states,” Inna Romashevskaya, the press secretary of the British embassy in Minsk, told Itar-Tass on Wednesday.

She said the ban would remain in force during the time of the Olympic Games.

Alexander Zhukov, the head of the Russian Olympic Committee, was the first to break the news in his blog in Twitter.

“The Organizing Committee of the London Olympic Games has denied accreditation to Alexander Lukashenko, the president of the National Olympic Committee of Belarus. Is sport beyond politics? What about the Olympic values and traditions? Any schoolchild knows that truce was concluded in ancient Greece for the time of the Olympic Games,” Zhukov wrote.


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