The Union of European Football Federations (UEFA) has ordered the Ukrainian team to remove the controversial political slogan from its uniform for Euro 2020, reports the Russian portal Championat.
The new uniform of the Ukrainian national team for the continental tournament has generated controversy in media and social networks. The front of the shirts features an outline of Ukrainian borders including Crimea, despite the peninsula being part of Russia after its citizens overwhelmingly voted in favor of reunification with this country amid civil unrest in Kiev in 2014. .
In addition, the players’ jersey contains the motto of the Ukrainian nationalists “Glory to Ukraine! Glory to the heroes!“.
These phrases have a long history in the European country, dating back to the 19th century. But in the two centuries since, they have acquired nationalistic overtones. Both were used by members of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, groups that fought alongside the Nazis in World War II and played important roles in the Holocaust.
Since 2014, far-right groups in Ukraine have reinstated the terms and have become a rallying cry for nationalists.
“They dismiss the will of the Crimeans”
Although some public figures openly criticized the Ukrainian report, President Vladimir Putin said he saw nothing new in the approach taken by Kiev, he notes. TASS.
“There is nothing new here, because we know well the position of the Ukrainian authorities with regard to Crimea,” said the president, noting that he is not offended by the design of the shirts. “They dismiss the expression of the will of the Crimeans, which also does not fit with the understanding of what democracy is,” he added.
A clear political meaning
After the controversy caused by the Ukrainian uniform for the next edition of the European Championship, the Russian Football Union asked UEFA to analyze it, indicating that it contains elements considered politically provocative.
The top soccer entity on the continent concluded that the map of Ukraine on the national team’s uniform does not violate the organization’s rules, since the UN recognizes the corresponding state borders. Likewise, the slogan “Glory to Ukraine” will also remain on the team’s jerseys, as it can itself be considered non-political.
However, the second catchphrase, “Glory to the heroes” will have to be removed from the uniform, because in combination with the first, it has a clear political meaning, reviews the medium.