The Russian city of Kazan has been stripped of its hosting rights for this year’s World Swimming Championships (25m) by FINA, the global governing body for aquatic sports.
The event had been due to take place from December 17-22 but FINA has opted to remove the competition from Russia following the country’s invasion of Ukraine.
FINA said it is currently in discussions with potential hosts to take over the event, which had been due to take place at Kazan’s Aquatics Palace (pictured). The venue has a capacity of around 4,000 and also hosted diving events during the World Aquatics Championships in 2015.
The World Swimming Championships become the latest sporting event to be stripped from Russia amid the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
Saint Petersburg had been due to host this year’s UEFA Champions League final but the match will now be held at the Stade de France in Paris, while the contract for Formula 1’s Russian Grand Prix has been terminated. Russian athletes were also banned from the recent Winter Paralympic Games in Beijing.
FINA has also confirmed that Russian and Belarusian athletes will not be able to compete at its upcoming World Championships event in Budapest, Hungary. The event is due to take place from June 18 to July 3 and will feature swimming, diving, water polo, open water and artistic swimming.
Following the decision, the Russian Swimming Federation informed FINA that it would be withdrawing all aquatics athletes from all events for the rest of the year.
Kazan is also due to host the 2025 edition of the World Aquatics Championships.