Friday, May 20, 2022
HomeSportsRussian Gymnast Faces Long Ban After Wearing ‘Z’ War Symbol

Russian Gymnast Faces Long Ban After Wearing ‘Z’ War Symbol

The public is outraged.

Ivan Kuliak, a Russian gymnast has enraged a lot of people with his shocking behavior at the podium. Ivan apparently wore a symbol supporting the Ukraine invasion by Russian troops during the medal ceremony.

What’s even worse is that he wore the symbol while standing beside a Ukrainian gymnast on the podium. His actions have been condemned by many including the gymnast association and he now faces a potential long-term ban.

Here are more details about the shocking behavior of the gymnast:

What Happened?

Ivan Kiliak, the Russian gymnast apparently wore a sign during the award ceremony that sort of supports the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and that action has now got him in trouble.


Ivan won the bronze medal at the Apparatus World Cup in Doha in the finals of parallel bars. However, while it was the time for National Anthem, Ivan apparently taped the letter ‘Z’ in front of his costume all while standing next to the Ukrainian gymnast, Illia Kovtun who won the gold medal.

What Does the Letter ‘Z’ Mean?

The letter ‘Z does not exist in the Cyrillic Russian alphabet, but it has been often seen written on Russian artillery, tanks, and other vehicles. This marking of the letter Z has come to symbolize and support the Russian president, Vladimir Putin.

Using the symbol right now recently means giving your support to Putin and his ongoing invasion of Ukraine which is being heavily condemned by people all over the globe. Ivan apparently wore the symbol after he was not able to don the Russian flag since it was banned by the International Gymnastics Federation (IGF).

The Consequences

For one thing, Ivan has certainly invited trouble, as well as the hate of many on the internet, and people have been thrashing his behavior ever since then.

FIG said in a statement that they will be asking the Gymnastics Ethics Foundation to carry out disciplinary actions against Ivan after his horrible behavior and it is possible that he will be facing a long-term ban from his sport.

While it was not properly revealed what exact sanctions will Ivan be facing but a source told the Guardian that FIG holds “the power to ban a gymnast from any of their sanctioned events for as long as they like”. However, it is highly unlikely that Ivan’s bronze medal would be confiscated or removed at this point.

On Monday, FIG suspended all Russian and Belarusian officials, judges as well as gymnasts for future competitions. It stands to show just how much is the Russian invasion being condemned by people all over the world.



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