MINSK, 2 May (BelTA) - The 2nd CIS Games are an important event for Belarusian athletes, as they provide an opportunity to understand the level of training against the background of athletes from different countries, Deputy Chairman of the Standing Committee on Healthcare, Physical Culture, Family and Youth Policy of the House of Representatives Aleksandr Maseikov told BelTA.
"Such competitions allow athletes to grow professionally, gain experience and subsequently achieve better results. In order for athletes to hone up their skills, they need to compete at international events, where they can see their advantages and drawbacks, analyze them and move further," the MP said.
He noted that in the context of sanctions, Russia and Belarus are expanding cooperation in sport. Emphasis is placed on the development of the countries' own competitive formats and the training process. Active work is underway between educational organizations. "As far as I know, Belarusian athletes have been granted access to all national competitions in the Russian Federation. We compete in all sports. As for the 2nd CIS Games, this format of competitions reminds me of the Friendship Games. That international multi-sport event was held in 1984 after our athletes did not go to the Olympics in Los Angeles. The Friendship Games featured the same medal events as the Olympic Games," Aleksandr Maseikov recalled.
The 2nd CIS Games are of particular importance for athletes now, when a number of Western countries are trying to isolate Belarus and Russia from world sports by using all kinds of sanctions, although the slogan "Sport and politics do not mix " is a fundamental principle of international sports, including of the Olympic Charter. "Having applied economic sanctions against Belarus and Russia, Western politicians saw that they did not yield the result they were counting on. Economically, we coped with their sanctions. So they switched to sport. Nevertheless, I would like to note that this phenomenon is not all-encompassing: some federations allow access to our athletes. In my opinion, these are cool-headed federations. They remain true to the principles and ideals of sport. Now, as far as I know, the IOC recommended that international federations consider allowing Belarusian and Russian athletes to participate in competitions. Just the other day the International Canoe Federation made a positive decision on this issue. I think that some federations realized that sport without athletes from Belarus and Russia would be incomplete," the MP noted.