WASHINGTON, July 5. /TASS/. The United States and its partners have urged to suspend the membership of the national sports federations of Russia and Belarus within all international federations, the US Department of State said in a statement on Tuesday.
"Russian and Belarusian sport national governing bodies should be suspended from international sport federations," the statement reads, adding that such announcement was made in view of Russia’s special military operation in Ukraine.
"Individuals closely aligned to the Russian and Belarusian states, including but not limited to government officials, should be removed from positions of influence on international sport federations, such as boards and organizing committees," the statement continued.
"National and international sports organizations should consider suspending the broadcasting of sports competitions into Russia and Belarus," according to the statement from the US Department of State.
On February 28, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) issued recommendations to international sports federations to bar athletes from Russia and Belarus from taking part in international tournaments, referring to a special military operation in Ukraine.
Following the IOC recommendations in late February, the majority of global sports federations decided to bar athletes from Russia and Belarus from all international sports tournaments.
In late May, IOC President Thomas Bach stated that the world’s current situation was against the return of Russian athletes back to the international level of sports competitions.
Russia’s military operation
On February 21, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that Moscow would recognize the sovereignty of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics. Russia signed agreements on friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance with their leaders. Russia recognized the Donbass republics in accordance with the DPR and LPR constitutions within the boundaries of the Donetsk and Lugansk regions as of the beginning of 2014.
Russian President Putin said in a televised address on February 24 that in response to a request by the heads of the Donbass republics, he had decided to carry out a special military operation in Ukraine. The Russian leader stressed that Moscow had no plans of occupying Ukrainian territories, noting that the operation was aimed at the denazification and demilitarization of Ukraine.
Subsequently, the DPR and the LPR launched an operation to liberate their territories under Kiev’s control.