"Hypocritical position": Russia is furious after Israel's partial return to the World Cup of Hockey
The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) has amended its decision to temporarily suspend Israeli teams from its competitions. In particular, the organization allowed the U-20 national team to participate in the World Junior Championship in the third division of Group A, which will be held in Bulgaria from January 22 to 29, causing hysteria among the Russians.
"After recent exchanges and extensive discussions with all stakeholders, the IIHF has received from the Bulgarian Ministry of Youth and Sports and the organizing committee the necessary confirmation of the security necessary to allow the Israeli national team to participate in the 2024 IIHF World Under-20 Ice Hockey Championship, Division III, Group A (WM20IIIA), which will be held in Sofia from January 22-29, 2024.," the IIHF official website said in a statement.
This decision of the federation caused a new outburst of anger among Russians. Dmitry Svishchev, chairman of the State Duma Committee on Physical Culture and Sports, accused the IIHF of inconsistency. "I did not suspect that this would happen. I thought that maybe there would be some logic in the IIHF's decision, but this did not happen. After all, first the Russians were suspended, then the Belarusians, and then Israel. It was logical. Now there is no logic in it," he said in a commentary to Vprognoze.ru.
Two-time Olympic champion Alexander Kozhevnikov mockingly commented on the move by the federation and its president, Luc Tradif, to the same publication: "They are surprising people there. If you take it right, it's impossible. The Frenchman doesn't understand anything there at all."
Vyacheslav Fetisov, a two-time Olympic champion and State Duma deputy, was also furious, commenting on the decision to Sport24. "Nothing surprises me anymore about international sports organizations. A hypocritical position from the IIHF. Nothing new here," the former hockey player said.
As OBOZ.UA previously reported, Olympic champion Dominik Gashek harshly criticized the National Hockey League (NHL) for allowing Russian athletes to play in the championship despite Russia's aggression against Ukraine.