Russia Admitted Back Into The WDSF

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The World DanceSport Federation (WDSF) has granted provisional acceptance to a new Russian member body after the expulsion of the Russian DanceSport Union (RDSU) late last October.

The WDSF voted to remove the Russian DanceSport Union from membership last year after Russia failed to meet a clearly defined set of obligatory criteria. The vote was held on June 12, 2016, but the WDSF Presidium decided to postpone the removal of the RDSF until October 31, 2016, giving the organization the opportunity to get in line with expectations.

The RDSU had been criticized for its undemocratic processes and active attempts of disenfranchising certain groups in the Russian DanceSport community, essentially playing favorites among dancers that they've been tasked with representing equally.

The union was charged with practicing systematic expulsion and disenfranchisement of dancers on unreasonable grounds. It was asked to remove select people from office, implement liberal reforms, and hold democratic elections by the October 31, 2016, and its failure to do so led to its expulsion from the WDSF.

Immediately after the decision was made to expel the RDSU, the president of the WDSF, Lukas Hinder, began working with the Russian DanceSport community on reconciliation and the creation of a new national member body.

In May of this year, newly elected president Nadezhda Erastova of the All Russian Federation of DanceSport and Acrobatic Rock 'n' Roll submitted an application for membership into the WDSF. The application was warmly received, albeit still needing some modifications. While the Presidium unanimously voted to readmit Russian DanceSport into the WDSF, the move was limited to one year and with conditions.

The WDSF is hopeful that any remaining issues can be easily sorted out over the next couple of months and the relationship between the two communities will be fully reconciled and reinvigorated.

Russia is the mecca for DanceSport, with high participation on all levels. With an equitable and democratic governing body, there is really no limit to what can be achieved in the Russian DanceSport community.

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