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French basketballers barred from entering national team if they play for Russian clubs

It is mentioned that such decision also applies to players and staff members who have already signed with a Russian or Belarusian club"

MOSCOW, August 1. /TASS/. French basketballers, who are already playing or intend to play for professional clubs in Russia and Belarus, will not be selected to the national team of France, the press office of the French Basketball Federation (FFBB) said in a statement on Monday.

According to the statement, this decision was made at the FFBB Federal Bureau meeting on July 28 and will be in force until the Russian special operation in Ukraine is over.

"Meeting on July 28, 2022, the Federal Bureau decided that players and staff who sign a contract with a Russian or Belarusian club can no longer be selected as long as the exclusion measures from all international competitions are in force," the statement reads.

"This decision also applies to players and staff members who have already signed with a Russian or Belarusian club."

The FFBB stated that "all the delegations selected in the senior men's and women's French team are invited to sign a sworn statement to participate in international meetings and competitions. Players and staff members will have to sign this certificate, indicating that they are not engaged and will not engage with a Russian or Belarusian club for the duration of the conflict with Ukraine."

"It is indicated that if this commitment was not respected, the player or staff member would then no longer respect the selection criteria for the next international events, including the 2024 Olympic Games," the statement added.

Following the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Paris will host the Summer Games in 2024, while Los Angeles will hold the Games in 2028.

The statement from FFBB also reads that "In addition to sanctions and measures aimed at limiting partnerships and other financial support from entities with links to the Russian state and Belarus, international sports federations, including FIBA, have decided to exclude national teams, clubs and Russian athletes in international competitions. The French Basketball Federation (FFBB) supports all of these measures."

Sanctions against Russian basketball

In mid-May the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) has officially confirmed its decision to suspend the Russian national women and men’s teams from the FIBA World Cup competitions in 2022 and 2023 respectively.

The world’s governing body of basketball also barred Russia from international 3x3 basketball competitions in men and women’s categories. According to the statement from FIBA’s press office on May 18, the world’s governing body of basketball decided to impose sanctions both in regard to national teams of Russia and Belarus, namely against the Russian Basketball Federation (RBF) and the Belarusian Basketball Federation (BBF).

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 Russia’s 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.