The trauma of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine can still be felt, and it is now up to Russian Sergei Solovich, who has been president of the European Judo Federation (EJU) since 2007, to resign.
After an online meeting with the executive committee of this body, which ended early Sunday evening, Sergei Solovitchek left his post and was temporarily replaced by German Vice President Otto Knittinger.
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After the decision, Solovicic sent a letter to the presidents of national federations in Europe, as well as to members of the Executive Committee, and also posted on the EJU website. Here is his full message.
Today, all the peoples of Europe, including the judo family of the European Union, are facing an unprecedented situation. With heavy hearts we see people from sister countries dying. We ask God to end human suffering.
Judo has always been an international force for peace. The European Judo Federation has taken consistent steps to promote universal values. It has always been this way, and I’m sure it always will be! In this very difficult political situation, we must be stronger and more united than ever before.
I believe that to maintain unity in our ranks, I must resign from the presidency of the European Judo Federation.
You’ve known me for years, and no one doubts that my heart belongs to judo. But it is also true that it belongs to my homeland, Russia. We judokas must always be true to our principles.
I’m sure good intentions will prevail. I ask you, my dear friends and colleagues, to let go of the feelings that currently dominate us and to find the strength to begin to restore the lost peace in our hearts.” Sergei Solovichik concludes.