Russia has now been stripped of every single major international sporting event and championships it was set to host in 2022, with swimming’s global governing body FINA having put the final nail in the coffin of the country’s immediate future as a sporting host yesterday (March 24).
FINA stripped Kazan of its hosting rights for the FINA 2022 World Championships (25m), which had been due to take place in that city between December 17-22.
This was the last significant international event from the world of sport which was still scheduled to be held in Russia, from which a mass exodus of competitions and tournaments has taken place in the last month, ever since the start of the country's invasion of Ukraine in late February – causing a war which has so far left upwards of 5.5 million Ukrainians as refugees.
Those dates will be kept, and FINA has said it is “currently in discussions with potential hosts to take over the event.”
FINA had already taken the decision to exclude Russian and Belarusian athletes (Belarus has materially assisted Russia during the invasion) from its competitions for the foreseeable future, and it has now confirmed that both athletes and officials from those countries will not be eligible to participate in the FINA 2022 World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, from June 18 to July 3.
FINA was one of dozens of sports governing bodies to exclude and ban those athletes from competing at future events, earlier this month, with the sporting world overwhelmingly turning its back on both Russia and Belarus in the wake of the invasion.
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