February 13, 2015

LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) Swimming's world governing body has made a ''strong appeal'' to 208 member federations not to boycott events for political reasons.

FINA says its ruling bureau declared it ''does not tolerate any form of political motivation to justify the non-participation in our events.''

Though FINA did not specify a reason for the statement, it was released just months ahead of the world championships in Russia.

Kazan will host the championships in swimming, diving, open water swimming, synchronized swimming and water polo from July 24-Aug. 9.

Since tensions flared between Russia and Ukraine one year ago, European football body UEFA ruled that teams from the two countries cannot be drawn to play each other.

At FINA's 2013 worlds in Barcelona, Ukraine won five medals - one silver and four bronze - in diving and synchronized swimming.

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