Russian tennis star responds as politician wants her blacklisted

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Russia’s Daria Kasatkina has responded after a politician attempted to get her blacklisted as a “foreign agent”. The WTA world No 8 came out as gay during an appearance in a YouTube video over the summer, in which she also condemned her country for invading Ukraine. Roman Teryushkov – a member of the 8th State Duma – has now claimed that he sent a letter to the Ministry of Justice requesting Kasatkina be listed as a “foreign agent”.

Earlier this year, Kasatkina appeared in a YouTube video with Russian blogger Vitya Kravchenko in a lengthy YouTube video with fellow ATP pro Andrey Rublev, in which she came out as gay and confirmed she had a girlfriend, spoke out against the war in Ukraine, and explained why young tennis players in Russia hoping to go pro were better off switching allegiances.

Teryushkov was quick to criticise the 25-year-old at the time and recently revealed that he was denied a request that the tennis star be put on the list of “foreign agents”, which would see her banned from receiving state funding, having her website blocked by court order and subject to additional audits And Kasatkina herself has now responded on her Telegram account – a popular social media platform in Russia.

“How nice to have fans from the State Duma,” she wrote, adding a smiling emoji covered in love hearts in the sarcastic message. It comes after Teryushkov called out Kasatkina and two other players in a interview before revealing his attempt to request that the six-time title winner be blacklisted.

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“Using your fame as a tool to influence others on issues of politics or ideology, you need to be prepared not only to receive preferences from the customer, but also to measures of responsibility from the state,” he claimed. “Kasatkina, Khachanov, Kafelnikov openly criticise the actions of the Russian authorities, permanently residing outside the territory of the Russian Federation, act in a neutral status [without the Russian flag and anthem], demonstrating to the whole world distancing themselves from the NWO and Russian society. Their actions fall under the law on foreign agents.”

The former Minister of Physical Culture and Sports revealed that he sent a letter to the Ministry of Justice claiming that Kasatkina should be listed as a foreign agent following a recent change to the foreign agent legislation that means almost anyone who expresses opinions on the conduct of Russian policies and officials can be blacklisted. Teryushkov continued: “As for Kasatkina, I have submitted an appeal to the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation to include her in the list of foreign agents.

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“The department responded with a formal reply, expressing disinterest in stopping the illegal actions of the tennis player. In turn, I re-sent a deputy request to check the legality of such a response and take appropriate measures.”

It’s not the first time Teryushkov has slammed the top 10 player, as he criticised her in a post on his own Telegram account following the release of the YouTube video she appeared in. A vivid example of the school of “individualists”, adherents of the West,” he wrote, sharing a clip from the video. “Having publicly admitted her non-traditional sexual orientation, the first racket of Russia, Daria Kasatkina, urged young athletes to change their citizenship. I see in such appeals the promotion of the transfer of our athletes to the national teams of other countries, in fact – a crime against the state.”

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