Russian swimmer banned from competition after attending pro-Putin rally
Russian Olympic gold medalist swimmer Evgeny Rylov has been banned from competition for nine months after appearing at a rally in support of Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
Driving the news: FINA, swimming's international governing body, said in a statement Thursday that Rylov was suspended "from all competitions and activities organized or sanctioned by FINA" for nine months.
The big picture: Rylov, who won two gold medals at the Tokyo Olympics last year, appeared alongside other Russian athletes at the pro-Putin rally at Luzhniki Stadium in March, according to the AP.
- Rylov wore a jacket with a "Z" on the chest at the event — a symbol of support for Russian troops and the invasion of Ukraine.
- His suspension is largely symbolic because no athletes or officials from Russia or Belarus will be invited to any FINA event through the end of 2022.
- FINA had previously banned the Russian and Belarusian teams from competing at the 2022 world championships in Budapest.