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MOSCOW, August 24. /TASS/. Observers from the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) have arrived in Moscow to monitor Tuesday’s elections for the post of the Russian Basketball Federation’s (RBF) new president, Russia’s governing body of basketball announced on Monday.
The delegation of FIBA’s observers includes among the others Sports Director at FIBA Europe Kosta Iliev and FIBA Europe Vice President Cyriel Coomans, who is also in charge of FIBA’s working group on cooperation with the RBF.
RBF’s elections of the president and members of the Executive Committee have been scheduled for August 25. Russia’s famous ex-basketballer Andrey Kirilenko and Dmitry Domani, the general manager of the national men’s team, are currently the only two candidates to take the helm of the federation.
Although Kirilenko, who has a vast career past in the US National Basketball Association (NBA), was viewed as the candidate for the RBF presidency for several months already, Domani was announced as the last-minute candidate for the election.
Andrey Arkhangelsky, the secretary general of the RBF, told TASS earlier in the day that Russia’s regional basketball federations had been sending their requests to the RBF asking to nominate Domani as a candidate running for the post of the federation’s president.
"They [the requests] will be all considered within the day and if everything turns out to be all right, Domani will be officially nominated," Arkhangelsky said in an interview with TASS. "We have time for this."
Late last month the RFB was suspended by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA), which cited the lack of transparency in the Russian federation’s management as the reason for its decision. All Russian national basketball teams were suspended from international competitions as a result of the suspension.
However, at a session of the FIBA’s Central Board, which convened on August 8-9 in Tokyo, Japan, it was decided to all the Russian national teams to play at the international level championships, but the suspension of the RFB remained in force.
FIBA’s suspension of the RFB put in extreme jeopardy Russian national men team’s participation in the 2015 FIBA European Championship, to be held between September 5 and 20.
This year’s championship is of a particular value, since it will not only decide the title of the best European basketball team, but also serves as a qualifying tournament for the national teams’ spots at the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro.
Earlier in the month, a Moscow Court ruled to oblige the RBF to hold a conference for electing the organization’s new president and executive committee.
Commenting on the RBF suspension, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said in mid-August that "As soon as we restore governance in basketball, we’ll address the issue of the lift of sanctions.".