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International Judo Federation strips titles from Vladimir Putin and Russian oligarch

Confronting Putin: What can Americans expect?
Confronting Putin: What can Americans expect? 09:48

The International Judo Federation has removed the titles and jobs Vladimir Putin and a long-time Kremlin-supporting oligarch held at the organization. The announcement comes as Russia's attack on Ukraine has killed hundreds of civilians and driven more than 1.5 million to flee into neighboring nations.

"The International Judo Federation announces that Mr. Vladimir Putin and Mr. Arkady Rotenberg have been removed from all positions held in the International Judo Federation," the Budapest-based governing body said in a statement late Sunday.

Putin's honorary presidency of the IJF was suspended last week with the organization citing "the ongoing war conflict in Ukraine."

Russia Putin
In this pool photo taken on Thursday, Feb. 14, 2019, Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, attends a training session with the Russian national judo team at the Yug-Sport Training Center in Sochi, Russia. Mikhail Klimentyev / AP

The Russian president is an avid judoka and attended the sport at the 2012 London Olympics. The 69-year-old is a judo black belt and co-authored a book titled "Judo: History, Theory, Practice."

Rotenberg is a long-time friend of Putin from their home city of St. Petersburg and was a member of the IJF executive committee as "development manager." 

The move comes a week after World Taekwondo stripped Putin of his honorary black belt.

World Taekwondo, the international governing body of the sport, said that Russia's attack on Ukraine goes against the group's vision of "Peace is more precious than triumph," as well as the values of respect and tolerance. 

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