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Russia unveils official mascot for 2024 BRICS Games in Kazan

"Before, it was Barsik [mascot for the 2013 FISU Summer Universiade in Kazan] and now we present Briksik," Vladimir Leonov stated

MOSCOW, April 11. /TASS/. Bricsik the leopard has been selected as the mascot for this summer’s 2024 BRICS Games in Kazan, the capital of the Russian Republic of Tatarstan, the republic’s sports minister said on Thursday.

"We have chosen the symbol, the mascot of the [BRICS] Games and named him Bricsik," Tatarstan Minister of Sports Vladimir Leonov said speaking at the "We Are Together: Sport" forum in Moscow.

"Before, it was Barsik [mascot for the 2013 FISU Summer Universiade in Kazan] and now we present Bricsik," Leonov stated.

The 2024 BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) Games will be held in Kazan on June 12-23 and will feature events in 25 different sports.

Last week, Deputy Head for Social Affairs of the Republic of Tatarstan Guzel Sagitova told journalists that as many as 74 countries will take part in the 2024 BRICS Games this year in the Russian city of Kazan.

"Kazan will bring together participants from 74 countries, including 10 BRICS member states, including Russia," she said adding that "the overall number of athletes and delegations’ participants in the event stands at over 4,700 people."

In mid-May 2023, Russian President Vladimir Putin instructed the government to submit proposals for organizing and holding the 2024 BRICS Games in Russia.

Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin emphasized later that the BRICS Games are not meant to rival any other competitions and will not interfere with the international sports calendar as well as with the IOC-approved calendar of events.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov paid an official visit earlier this week to China, where he stated that the 2024 BRICS Games and the following World Friendship Games in Russia would be organized based on the principles enshrined by International Olympic Committee (IOC) Charter.

IOC’s regulations against Russia

The International Olympic Committee Executive Board convened for a meeting at the Olympic House in Lausanne, Switzerland, on March 19-20 and following the opening day it decided to bar athletes from Russia and Belarus from taking part in the Parade of Athletes and also exclude them from the 2024 Olympics overall medal standings. The IOC, however, ruled that Russian athletes, cleared to participate in the upcoming Olympics, would not have to sign anything denouncing their country’s special military operation in Ukraine.

On October 12, 2023, the IOC suspended the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) until further notice after the Russian organization included the Olympic councils of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR), the Zaporozhye and Kherson Regions as its members.

The Swiss-based CAS registered on November 6, 2023 an appeal from the ROC against the IOC’s decision on the Russian governing Olympic body’s suspension.

The suspension means that the ROC cannot act as a national Olympic committee or receive financing from the Olympic movement. The IOC however reserved the right to clear Russian athletes to take part in the Olympic Games in Paris in 2024 as neutrals. Later, IOC President Thomas Bach said that Russian athletes should have no affiliation with the ROC if they want to compete at the Olympic Games.