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IIHF: Russia and Belarus still excluded for next year
Credit: Capture d'écran / Screenshot

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the IIHF suspended Russia and Belarus from all international hockey tournaments for the rest of the year.

In 2023, in March, the organizing committee of the International Ice Hockey Federation voted to ban the two countries from the 2023-2024 international season… Which was no great surprise.

At the time, we were wondering when Russia and Belarus would be readmitted to the IIHF, and there’s news on that front.

It’s simple, really: the IIHF announced today that the international bans against Russia and Belarus will continue for the next season (2024-2025), again due to the ongoing war with Ukraine.

This means that Russia and Belarus will not be allowed to take part in IIHF international events, such as the World Junior Championship:

Based on an in-depth analysis, the IIHF Council has concluded that it is not yet safe to reinstate the Russian and Belarusian teams in IIHF competitions. – International Ice Hockey Federation


It’s worth noting, however, that IIHF executives will be meeting in May 2025 to draw up a plan for the future.

Basically, that’s when we should know whether Russia and Belarus will be able to return in time for the Olympic Games, which will be held in Milan, Italy, in 2026.

All of which will be interesting to watch, as Russia is one of the world’s hockey powers.

To be continued.

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