Representatives of many European countries, along with the British sports minister, Nigel Huddleston, called for further steps to be taken to reduce Russia’s role in sports organizations. The European Union that still has a lot to do is UEFA, which has 22 activists from Russia and Belarus in its most important departments and committees.

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The gradual exclusion of Russia and Belarus from the world of sports is associated with the armed Russian attack on Ukraine, which Belarus supports. On the other hand, both countries use sports for propaganda purposes and attempts to improve their image. It is true that UEFA had previously decided to exclude Russian national teams and clubs from competitions organized by the federation, and the authorities, among others, are calling on Britain to take further steps.

The main accusation leveled against UEFA is the fact that there are still as many as 22 activists from Russia and Belarus, whose links to the governments of their countries are very clear. The “Daily Mail” described the case after the press investigation, and its journalists distinguished several personalities who were not arrested in any way.

Much attention was paid to Alexander Dukov, president of the Russian Pekka Nona Association and member of UEFA’s governing bodies. The Russian is also the CEO of Gazprom, a Russian government energy company. Britain sanctioned him for his links to Vladimir Putin, yet he still has an influence on the world summit.

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The article also notes the important role played by the former KGB officer, the security services of the USSR, lieutenant colonel in the military reserve Sergei Bredkin. He is the vice-president of the Russian Football Association, as well as the head of the Russian League. At UEFA, he is the Vice-Chairman of the National Teams Competition Committee.

“People closely associated with Russia and Belarus, including government officials, should be removed from influential positions on boards of directors and organizing committees,” Nigel Huddleston pleads.

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Politicians appealed not only to the UEFA authorities, but also to other sports federations in which Russian and Belarusian activists participate. This also applies to the world’s swimming, tennis and motoring organizations.