“I was born and raised in the Crimea. But after Crimea joined Russia, Ukrainian journalists have begun to find out if I have a Russian passport. Spent the whole investigation, made the film.
In the end, me and my colleague Yuriy Vaks in 2015 called on the FTC. Asked if we had Russian passports. We do not hide it confirmed that Yes, there are. Why do we have to hide something? And like all the story was silent.
As soon as the situation in Ukraine escalated, we began to receive threats. In the press, some experts said: “Citizens of Russia to judge Ukrainian championship. How so?”
And then everything escalated dramatically when we made the list of “Peacemaker”. Me and Yura Polish, and all of our relatives. Then we started to get text messages from nationalists who wrote that they will find us and will be dealt with.
After I got the appointment for the super Cup of Ukraine Shakhtar vs Dynamo began to rise a storm of indignation, criticism, resentment: as a citizen of Russia will judge the biggest match in Ukraine? This was the climax. The news of my appointment literally blew up the Internet and social networks.
The wave of discontent did not abate for several days, and even on the contrary gained momentum. The head of the Committee of arbitrators FFU Luciano Rays repeatedly repulsed attacks in my address.
Wrote and said that if I step on the field in Odessa it will be “the House of trade unions-2”. Straight text said that I will start a riot, people will get hurt. Yes, God knows what will happen if I just go out on the field. Can you imagine? The situation is tense and could get out of control.
The day before the game I was already in Odessa. I called Luciano Rays and said that it is necessary to abandon the match. Pressure from the leadership of the FFU, the country’s leadership was just incredible.
I was offered publicly to renounce Russian citizenship, Crimea, or even to break up on camera Russian passport. Only my Ukrainian and international career will continue. Promised to help, to support, if I fulfill their terms.
My actions? Guys, I grew up in the Crimea. How could I refuse the Russian citizenship? We by mutual consent terminated the contract with FFU,” he said of the Game.
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