- The Washington Times - Monday, June 7, 2021

Ukraine unveiled a soccer jersey ahead of the European championship this month that depicts Crimea as within its borders, outraging Russia.

The yellow-and-blue shirt features a white outline of the Eastern European country that clearly includes the Crimean peninsula at the bottom. It also includes the Russian separatist regions of Donetsk and Lugansk in the east.

Crimea was Ukrainian territory until Russia annexed it in 2014, a move condemned by the international community. It is the reason Russia won’t be attending the Group of Seven nations meetings in the U.K. this week  — Vladimir Putin and his country were kicked out of the G8 after they took Crimea.

Ukraine’s shirt, unveiled days before the Euro 2020 tourney kicks off after a pandemic-related delay, also says, “Glory to Ukraine!” — a slogan associated with protests against Moscow-friendly president Viktor Yanukovych in 2014.

Europe’s soccer-governing body, UEFA, told the BBC: “The shirt of the Ukrainian national team (and of all other teams) for UEFA Euro 2020 has been approved by UEFA, in accordance with the applicable equipment regulations.”

Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova responded by saying the jersey “attached Ukraine‘s territory to Russia‘s Crimea,” creating the “illusion of the impossible.”

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