Judo chiefs make Putin’s decision — RT Sport News

The Russian president has been honorary president and ambassador of the International Judo Federation since 2008

The International Judo Federation (IJF) has suspended Russian President Vladimir Putin as honorary president and ambassador, ending the role the head of state had held on the governing body since 2008.

Sports fan Putin regularly attended judo events, including competing at the London 2012 Olympics, where he sat alongside then British Prime Minister David Cameron and kissed Tagir Khaibulaev after the Russian judoka won gold, and the 2018 World Championships in Baku.

Putin is a black belt who was a regional judo champion in his hometown of St. Petersburg during his youth, according to the IJF website.

He also produced an instructional DVD on the martial art in 2008, “Let’s Learn Judo with Vladimir Putin”, and wrote a book on the sport which has been distributed to millions of schoolchildren.

Khaibulaev, Rio 2016 Olympic champion Beslan Mudranov and Natalia Kuziutina, who won a bronze medal at the same Games, took part in a session with Putin at the Federal Sports Training Center in Sochi in 2019.

When asked at the time if training was more helpful in relieving his mind or giving him more energy, Putin replied: “It’s probably both.

“It’s a well-known medical factor: for a person who plays sports, the adrenaline level rises, the mood improves, you see life differently.

“It is, so to speak, almost [a case of the] ‘pink glasses’ removed. All [becomes clear]… such a complex effect.

“The more upscale the athlete, the more [partner]. He feels everything at his fingertips, as they say.”

Mudranov said at the time: “For his age, President Putin is very good – and among all the presidents of all countries on the tatami [mat]he will certainly have no equal.

In a statement issued on Friday after the start of the military operation in Ukraine, IFJ President Marius L Vizer said: “We are saddened by the current international situation, the result of ineffective dialogue at the international level.

“We, the sports community, must remain united and strong, to support each other and our universal values, to always promote peace and friendship, harmony and unity.

“The judo family hopes that the current unrest can be resolved at the last moment, to restore normalcy and stability in Eastern Europe and the world, to be able to focus again on the various cultures, history and Europe’s heritage in the most positive way.”

The federation has canceled the 2022 Grand Slam, which was scheduled for Kazan in May.


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