Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has said that the Russian fencer decided to "play dirty" after losing to Olha Kharlan in a fair duel, and called on the International Fencing Federation to restore the Ukrainian woman's rights.
Source: Kuleba on Twitter
Quote from Kuleba: "Anna Smirnova lost the fair competition and decided to play dirty with the handshake show. This is exactly how [the] Russian army acts on the battlefield."
Details: The head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs emphasised that Kharlan won in fair competition and showed dignity. At the same time, he called on the International Fencing Federation to restore the rights of the Ukrainian athlete and allow her to continue competing.
Anna Smirnova lost the fair competition and decided to play dirty with the handshake show. This is exactly how Russian army acts on the battlefield. Olha Kharlan won the fair competition and showed dignity. I urge @FIE_fencing to restore Kharlan’s rights and allow her to compete. pic.twitter.com/ocGXoGxN30— Dmytro Kuleba (@DmytroKuleba) July 27, 2023
- Ukrainian fencer Olha Kharlan was disqualified from the World Fencing Championship in Milan for not showing "respect" to her Russian opponent after winning the duel.
- She refused to shake Smirnova's hand after the fight.
- Currently, the Ukrainian Fencing Federation is preparing a protest against Kharlan's disqualification for refusing to shake hands with the Russian.