Gymnast faces criminal liability for wearing Russian military symbols

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Ivan Kulyak faces disciplinary action from the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) after appearing on the podium with a Russian military symbol at the World Cup in Doha.

Russian gymnast Kulyak placed third in a competition in Qatar won by Ukrainian Ilya Kovtun amid Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

As the athletes stood in the stands, Kulyak was seen with the letter “Z” taped to the front of his shirt, a symbol that reportedly means “victory” in Russian and was seen on the tanks involved in the invasion.

The letter “Z” stood in place of the Russian flag, which was banned by the governing body of gymnastics, and the federation confirmed that it is now asking the Gymnastics Ethics Foundation to investigate the incident.

The International Gymnastics Federation confirms that it will apply to the Gymnastics Ethics Foundation to initiate disciplinary proceedings against artistic gymnast Ivan Kulyak (Russia) following his shocking behavior at the World Gymnastics Championships in Doha, Qatar.

“On March 4, the FIG took additional measures regarding Russia and Belarus. As of March 7, 2022, Russian and Belarusian athletes and officials, including judges, are not allowed to compete in FIG competitions or in FIG-sanctioned competitions.”

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