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Russia against Kosovo’s membership in FIFA — diplomat

May 12, 16:31 UTC+3
According to the Russiaon Foreign Ministry, Pristina believes that the admission to international unions and organizations would help to win the international recognition of its sovereignty
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Russian Foreign Ministry building in Moscow

Russian Foreign Ministry building in Moscow

© ITAR-TASS/Gennady Khamelyanin

MOSCOW, May 12. /TASS/. Moscow will not support Kosovo’s admission to members of the world’s governing body of football, FIFA, Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, said on Thursday.

"Our [Russian] position on Kosovo remains unchanged," she said. "We see that Pristina attempts taking steps on the admission to international unions and organizations and believes that it would help to win the international recognition of its sovereignty."

"Perhaps, the aspired membership in FIFA is one of its attempts. We [Russia] will not support it," Zakharova added.

Kosovo seeks membership in FIFA after it was admitted to the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) at the organization’s Congress on May 3.

The UEFA Congress approved the decision by a 28 majority vote, while 24 UEFA members, including the Russian Football Union, voted against. Two ballot papers were declared void.

The Republic of Kosovo is recognized partially. It is not a member of the United Nations. A total of 64 states, including Russia, China, India and Brazil do not recognize Kosovo.

At the December 2014 session of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Kosovo’s National Olympic Committee was unanimously granted the right to become a full-fledged member of the Olympic movement.

After that a number of sports federations (of track and field athletics, basketball, volleyball, cycling and chess) of the self-proclaimed Kosovo Republic received temporary or permanent membership of the respective international organizations.

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