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Global lawmakers back Russia on inadmissibility of politicizing sports, notes senator

Sports must be and will always be beyond politics, the senator stressed

MOSCOW, January 24. /TASS/. Russia has been able to convince legislators abroad that resorting to using sports for political objectives is inadmissible. Politicians from six countries signed a resolution, which includes the relevant provision submitted by Moscow, Senator Lyudmila Bokova who was a member of the delegation that took part in the 26th session of the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF) told TASS on Wednesday.

The participants in the 26th annual APPF session, which ended a few days ago, adopted a resolution that included a paragraph submitted by Russian legislators, namely: "To confirm that sports should be free from politics and call on the APPF members to counter any political or commercial use of athletes and abuse in sports in accordance with the Olympic Charter."

"It was not easy for us to submit it in an unchanged form, since it is obvious what pressure is being exerted on representatives of various countries. However, during the debate, our stance was accepted and fully included into the final resolution," said Bokova who is a member of the Russian Federation Council’s (upper house) temporary commission for the protection of national sovereignty.

She recalled that these principles were enshrined in the Olympic Charter, which, although it was adopted at the time of establishing the International Olympic Movement, is a mandatory document for all member-countries within the movement. One of the fundamental principles enshrined in the charter is the absence of any form of discrimination in sports, even on political grounds. Bokova is certain that the resolution passed by the APPF will be a reminder that it is high time for many politicians to read this document carefully once again.

"Countries are tired of sanctions and political pressure that has spread even to such spheres as culture and sports, which are far removed from politics. The adoption of this resolution underscores that parliamentarians in many countries are willing to meet each other halfway on abandoning confrontation in the field where International Olympic Movement principles should be applicable. Sports must be and will always be beyond politics," the senator stressed.