Federal Minister of Agriculture Cem Özdemir is relieved about the “good news” from the international sports associations about the exclusion of Russia and Belarus.
In particular, football must “be careful with whom it is photographed, where the events are awarded,” said the Green politician on “Sky”. The self-confessed fan of VfB Stuttgart watched the Swabians 3:2 against Borussia Mönchengladbach in the Ukraine jersey in the stadium.
“The struggle of the people in Ukraine, they don’t fight it for themselves,” said Özdemir and warned that “the Putins of this world” shouldn’t be allowed to assert themselves. The minister also expressed “great respect” to the people in Russia who stood in the way of Russian President Vladimir Putin. “They know what they are risking,” said Özdemir.
After Russia’s attack on Ukraine last week, the major associations had excluded teams and athletes from Russia and Belarus from their competitions. Previously, Russia in particular had played a very influential role in world sport – the 2018 World Cup, for example, was hosted in Russia.