IMMAF Suspends the Russian MMA Union & Belarusian MMA Union

This afternoon, IMMAF have taken the decision to ban both Russian and Belarusian Federation from competing at any IMMAF related competitions, including the upcoming Super Cup which was set to be held from March 7 to 12 in Bahrain during the Brave International Combat Week.

IMMAA are sending a team from Ireland who were set to face off against RMMAU in the quarter-finals on the 8-team tournament. Teams from Kazakhstan, the Balkan Champions along with Team Bahrain and Team Tajikistan are also set to compete for a total prize of $250,000.

The press release stated that the Ukrainian team would not be taking part in the tournament.

The International Mixed Martial Arts Federation have made the following statement.

The board of the International Mixed Martial Arts Federation has taken the decision to suspend the membership of the Russian MMA Union (RMMAU) and the Federation of Hand-to-Hand Fighting & MMA of Belarus.

In doing so, IMMAF unites with international sport in boycotting Russia and Belarus in response to the nations’ attack on Ukraine. 

The suspension will bar the Russian and Belarusian federations from participating in all IMMAF Championships for the foreseeable future. This will include the MMA Super Cup taking place next week from 8 to 12 March 2022, organised by BRAVE but sanctioned by the IMMAF under IMMAF rules and regulations.

The move also prevents the organisation of IMMAF events in Russia or Belarus.

IMMAF President Kerrith Brown said:

“It is with sadness that the IMMAF board has taken this decision as we believe in the power of sport to unite people beyond politics. However, the homeland of our friends and colleagues in the MMA League of Ukraine is under attack and they have been forced from competing in next week’s Super Cup as they take to defending their country. We are compelled to unite with global sport in showing solidarity with Ukraine.”

Ian O'Neill is a Kilkenny man living in Canada. You can catch him on Twitter most of the time talking all things MMA. Follow me on Twitter and on Instagram @ioneillmma.