Wołha Safronowa is another Belarusian athlete who, after repressions in her country, received refuge in Poland. The Belarusian representative in horse riding was on the list of “traitors of the motherland” along with several dozen other sportsmen. Safronowa obtained a humanitarian visa in Poland and hopes to start as a representative of our country.
During the Tokyo Olympics Belarusian sprinter Kryscina Cimanouska was removed from the team for criticizing the coaches and ordered to return to Belarus. While still in Tokyo, Cimanouska asked the Polish side for help, then received a humanitarian visa and flew to Poland via Austria. Her decision was later commented on by President Alyaksandr Lukashenka at a press conference, arguing that Cimanouska had been “manipulated”.
A similar situation – as the Polish Press Agency found out – also concerned another Belarusian athlete, a representative of this country in equestrianism, Volha Safronova.
Safronowa and her partner with a Polish humanitarian visa
Its representative Tomasz Wiliński told PAP that Wołha Safronowa was in the Belarusian team for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, but was excluded from it before the Olympics. One of her horses was suspected of doping. Then the player spoke critically both about the authorities of the Belarusian union and about President Lukashenka himself.
Since she was in Poland, she carried out anti-doping tests on the horse here, which did not confirm the allegations. In the meantime, however, she was on the Belarusian list of “traitors of the motherland”, which included over 40 athletes from the national team. People on this list are not allowed to find any employment and are to be laid off if they are employed.
Then Safronova asked the Polish authorities to grant her and her partner a humanitarian visa. As her partner was in Belarus, he got to Lviv in Ukraine via Turkey, where he obtained a visa at the Polish consulate. A decision was made to bring two additional horses from Safronova from Belarus, which was not possible until Saturday.
Joanna Kluzik-Rostkowska helped the Belarusian athlete
Safron’s assistance in obtaining a visa and in bringing horses was provided, among others, by a member of the Civic Coalition, Joanna Kluzik-Rostkowska, who is associated with the equestrian community. – Everything was arranged efficiently thanks to the help of the Polish ambassador in Minsk – said Kluzik-Rostkowska.
– We managed to arrange a place for her horses in one of the best stables near Warsaw, so she has nowhere to keep the horses and now has a place to train – added the MP.
Attorney Wiliński admitted, however, that the matter had not been publicized so far, so that it could be successfully dealt with to the end. He added that the player hopes that in Poland she will be able to continue her career under a neutral flag, and in the future she will apply for Polish citizenship without giving up Belarusian. – If she receives them, she will want to represent Poland. The Polish Equestrian Federation is very much interested in working with her – said the representative.
He added that Safronowa is a titled competitor, classified higher in the international ranking than any of the Polish competitors. Last year, for example, she competed in Poland on her horse Sandro D’Amour and was at the forefront of the international CDI-W competition in Zakrzów.
Main photo source: BJORN LARSSON ROSVALL / TT NEWS AGENCY / PAP / EPA