MOSCOW, may 31. /TASS/. Fans who come to Russia for the confederations Cup 2017 and the 2018 FIFA world Cup, a warm welcome. About it in interview to TV channel RT, said inspector of the Russian football Union (RFU) on the fight against racism Alexei Smertin.

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“It is important to convey to all the fans and football fans who plan to come to Russia to cheer for their team or rooting for such a beautiful game like football, that they can expect a warm welcome, of course, and we will be happy to see absolutely all of them, from any continent to showcase our hospitality, our kindness and warmth,” said Smertin.

Earlier in some foreign media spread the photo of the carnival procession held on 27 may in Sochi, which shows two members disguised as black fans, dressed in national costumes. Part of the outfit of one of them was a bunch of bananas . Such items are often perceived by black fans and players as an insult, which have caused several scandals in the world of football. Later, the mayor of Sochi, Anatoly Pakhomov, has expressed a regret in connection with the incident.

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“Russia’s position is zero tolerance to any form of discrimination, which is stipulated by the Charter of FIFA (International football Federation – Approx. TASS). This is a normal position that comes up periodically, is a manifestation of individual people, not entire companies. This is evident because in any society, in any country there are such manifestations; that a small number of people who act intentionally, and often unintentionally, as, for example, the incident in Sochi is a result of bad taste, lack of education, and our task is just to minimize it, is the work of educational character first and foremost. Should be respected, this is the most basic principle of respect for fans, respect for opponents, respect for the teams that will attend the confederations Cup and the world Cup, it is very important,” said Smertin.

The matches of the confederations Cup will be held from 17 June to 2 July in Moscow, St.-Petersburg, Kazan and Sochi. The world championship will be held from 14 June to 15 July at 12 stadiums in 11 cities of Russia: Moscow, Saint-Petersburg, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod, Saransk, Kaliningrad, Volgograd, Yekaterinburg, Samara, Sochi and Rostov-on-don.

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