World Cup impossible without political change in Belarus, Fasel says

Alyaksandr Lukashenka and René Fasel. Photo by

Head of the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) René Fasel spoke in an interview with the Swiss edition Watson about the situation with the World Championship in Belarus in 2021.

The president of the ice hockey federation emphasized that he had made it clear on January 12 that “the World Championship will not be possible without a change in the political situation in the country.”

“We conveyed the message that with the championship in the current political situation, we have problems with the West. We knew there was maybe a 1% chance of changing anything. But if it’s there, it’s worth a try,” René Fasel said.

He also stated that his embrace of Alyaksandr Lukashenka in the photo and video did not in any way mean the agreement with the political situation in Belarus. According to him, it was just a meeting between two people who had known each other for 20 years.

Head of the IIHF noted that the photos were taken only for internal use.

Earlier, Fasel said that he wanted to use the special relationship with Alyaksandr Lukashenka “to do something good.”