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Vladimir Putin stripped of Honorary Taekwondo black belt over Ukraine invasion

By Ruchi Upadhyay 
Updated Date

New Delhi: Russian President Vladimir Putin has been stripped of his honorary taekwondo black belt over his country’s invasion of Ukraine, a personal rebuke heaped on top of international economic and sporting sanctions.

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World Taekwondo cited its motto of “Peace is More Precious than Triumph” and condemned the Russian military action in Ukraine, saying the “brutal attacks on innocent lives” violated the sport’s values of respect and tolerance.

“In this regard, World Taekwondo has decided to withdraw the honorary 9th dan black belt conferred to Mr Vladimir Putin in November 2013,” the governing body said in an official statement.

“In solidarity with the International Olympic Committee, no Russian or Belarusian national flags or anthems will be displayed or played at World Taekwondo events. World Taekwondo and the European Taekwondo Union will not organise or recognise Taekwondo events in Russia and Belarus,” the statement added.

It is noteworthy that other sporting organizations such as FIFA and UEFA have also suspended Russian national teams and clubs from the competition.

“Football is in full solidarity with all the people affected in Ukraine. Both Presidents hope that the situation in Ukraine will improve significantly and rapidly so that football can again be a vector for unity and peace,” FIFA and UEFA had said in a joint statement on Monday.

Meanwhile, Russian forces bombarded Ukraine’s second-largest city, Kharkiv, on Monday, drawing new sanctions from the United States and its allies as part of the international isolation of Russia. Moscow calls its actions in Ukraine a “special operation” that it says is not designed to occupy territory but to destroy its southern neighbour`s military capabilities and capture what it regards as dangerous nationalists.

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