Pavel Sivakov: ‘I’m totally against the war’ in Ukraine
Russian rider calls for calm and stresses that the Russian people should not be seen as targets of hate.
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Pavel Sivakov took to social media on Friday to criticize the Russian invasion of Ukraine, saying he was “totally against the war.”
The current situation in Ukraine appears to be worsening with a full-scale invasion from Russian troops underway and the capital city reportedly under attack. Russia’s actions have been denounced by NATO and its allies, with sanctions stepped up against Russia and its leaders.
The world of sport has also reacted with international events pulled from Russian soil and several sports bodies and athletes speaking out. Sivakov, born to Russian parents and former pro athletes, posted a message on social media making his feelings clear.
“It’s been a difficult few days seeing what’s currently happening. First of all I just want to say that I’m totally against the war and can’t get around of what’s going on in Ukraine, all my thoughts are with the Ukrainian people.”
— Pavel Sivakov (@PavelSivakov) February 25, 2022
Sivakov also stressed that he felt that the majority of Russian civilians were also against the conflict and he added that the people of Russia should not be vilified or turned into figures of hate and abuse as a result of rising tensions.
“I also want people to understand that most of the Russians only want peace and never asked for all this to happen. We shouldn’t be targets of hate just because of our origin. I know these few lines won’t make a big difference to the current situation but I just wanted to share it. Peace.”
Sivakov’s message was well received on Twitter and Instagram with over 4,000 ‘likes’ on Twitter at the time of publication.
The UCI president David Lappartient also took to Twitter on Friday to denounce the invasion.
“The UCI calls for an immediate halt to the hostilities in Ukraine and firmly condemns Russia’s violation of international law. Our thoughts are with the Ukrainian people as well as Ukraine’s cycling community. No UCI event is scheduled to take place in Russia or Belarus in 2022,” Lappartient wrote on Twitter.