MOSCOW (Reuters) – The head of ice hockey’s worldwide governing overall body stated on Tuesday it would do everything doable to make sure the 2021 environment championship is held in Belarus as prepared despite calls from the opposition to move the match.
Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has confronted weekly protests because proclaiming victory in an Aug. 9 election his opponents say was rigged. Lukashenko, who is an avid hockey lover, denies rigging the vote and has turned down calls to action down.
“I will meet up with with Alexander Lukashenko and we will go over the present-day circumstance,” Intercontinental Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) president Rene Fasel instructed Russia’s RIA news agency. “We will do anything possible for the planet championship to just take position in Minsk. We will make every single hard work.”
The conference, Fasel explained, would consider location in Belarus some time after Orthodox Christmas on Jan. 7.
Neighbouring Latvia, with whom Belarus is due to co-host the 2021 tournament, has been a vocal critic of Lukashenko given that the election, imposing sanctions on him and other Belarusian officers.
The IIHF Council in November stated it required more time to assess the circumstance close to the match.
Fasel claimed at the time that “the existing difficulties in Minsk, the government posture of the Latvian co-host, and the COVID-19 pandemic” could have an affect on the event, which is established to run from Might 21 to June 6.
Minsk earlier hosted the event in 2014.
Reporting by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber Enhancing by Christian Radnedge