Ukrainian tennis player, Elina Svitolina, has demanded that Russian and Belarusian players be subjected to ideological purity tests before they are allowed to compete in international tournaments. The former world number three has insisted on a total ban on all Russian and Belarusian athletes if they fail the test.
“We noticed that some Russian and Belarusian players at some point vaguely mentioned the war, but never clearly stating that Russia and Belarus started it on the territory of Ukraine,” Svitolina claimed on Twitter.
The woman showed that she is unhappy with Russian and Belarusian players merely calling for peace without clearly denouncing their own country and asserting it is to blame for the war. So she demanded players born in Russia to properly answer the following questions:
1. Do you support Russia’s and Belarus invasion in Ukraine’s territory and as a result of that the war started by those countries?
2. Do you support Russia’s and Belarus military activities in Ukraine?
3. Do you support Putin’s and Lukashenko’s regime?
She demanded that players answering “yes” to any of those questions should be slapped with a full scale tournament ban.
Svitolina expressed hope the statement “will work out.”
“When there is a genocide of Ukrainians, and they [Russians] represent their countries, then we need to know whether they support such actions. After all, according to statistics, 80% of Russians, perhaps even more, support such actions of their state. If this is really the case, why should they be among us, among our colleagues? It is important to us that there are virtually no murderers of our country among us,” she claimed.
The Ukrainian athlete’s Twitter-post appeared after the announcement of an even tougher restriction – the decision of the Wimbledon tennis tournament to totally ban Russian and Belarusian players from competing. Former world number one men’s champion Novak Djokovic called the decision “crazy,” saying politics shouldn’t interfere in sport.