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Famous ex-basketballer Kirilenko says FIBA’s sanctions on Russia tough

July 29, 2015, 17:30 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The International Basketball Federation (FIBA) has suspended Russian national basketball teams from all international competitions

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Andrei Kirilenko

Andrei Kirilenko

© ITAR-TASS/Stanislav Krasilniko

MOSCOW, July 29. /TASS/. The International Basketball Federation (FIBA) should have abstained from imposing sanctions against Russia by suspending the national teams from international tournaments, Andrei Kirilenko, a former basketballer and a candidate for the Russian Basketball Federation’s (RBF) presidency, told TASS on Wednesday.

Sergey Chernov, one of Russia’s FIBA executives, told TASS on Wednesday that RBF received a letter from the international federation and it states that the Russian basketball federation was not listed among the FIBA members. According to various reports, FIBA’s sanctions came as a result of Russian courts interference in the decisions of the RBF as governments are not allowed to interfere into the activities of the public sports organizations.

"This is not news for me, but once again nobody wants to assume responsibility for this," Kirilenko said in an interview with TASS. "We are losing more and more of our positions and the sooner the issue with elections is settled the sooner the work will start."

"The most important for FIBA is the legitimacy and transparency in all legal aspects," he said. "We do not have it at the moment and we received a relevant reaction."

"However, it should be not the reason for introducing in an ultimate manner such sanctions with only a month remaining before the European Championship, but we understand FIBA as well," Kirilenko added.

According to earlier reports, the Central Board of FIBA included in its agenda an issue concerning the reelection of the president and members of the Executive Committee of the Russian Basketball Federation.

The Russian men’s national basketball team was already in preparations for the European Basketball Championship, which is also the qualifying tournament of the European teams for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil.

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