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4 Jul, 2022 09:59

Detained hockey star will do military service in north of Russia – reports

Ivan Fedotov was held in St. Petersburg on Friday, reportedly on suspicion of evading military service
Detained hockey star will do military service in north of Russia – reports

Ice hockey star Ivan Fedotov will perform military service in northern Russia after being detained in St. Petersburg on Friday amid claims that he had attempted to evade his military duties, according to reports. 

TASS cited a law enforcement source as saying that Fedotov, 25, was transported to Severomorsk in the Murmansk region at the weekend and is expected to head to the Novaya Zemlya archipelago inside the Artic Circle.

“Ivan Fedotov is already in Severomorsk for military service. Presumably, the place of service will be one of the military units located on Novaya Zemlya in the Arctic Ocean,” the source said.

However, Russian outlet Sport-Express shared a photo of Fedotov, saying that he was in fact at a navy center in Severodvinsk, a city in the Arkhangelsk region which is to the southeast of Murmansk.

Commenting to Championat, Fedotov’s lawyer said that reports of military service on Novaya Zemlya were thus far only “speculation.”

An official from Russia’s Northern Fleet likewise said it was premature to discuss the goalie’s military service, stating that he was currently only at a training unit.

“In the Northern Fleet, we don’t have such a serviceman as Ivan Fedotov, he has entered the training unit of the Navy,” the representative told RIA.

“When there is a distribution [of students] after the training and he enters the Northern Fleet, then we can talk about his service. Now he is only studying.”

Fedotov was part of the Russian team which won silver at the Beijing Winter Olympics earlier this year.

The goaltender is a Gagarin Cup winner with CSKA Moscow but signed a contract with NHL team the Philadelphia Flyers when his deal with the Russian team ended at the conclusion of the season.

Fedotov is said to have been in St. Petersburg for personal training in preparation for next season. He was detained at a request from the military prosecutor’s office on suspicion of evading military service, a crime punishable by up to two years in prison. The player’s lawyer has denied any wrongdoing.

Fedotov reportedly fell ill with gastritis while at a military enlistment office in St. Petersburg and was seen being taken into an ambulance, but was later moved to the north of Russia.

Asked about the situation on Monday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said “there is the law, there is no need for emotional comments,” according to RIA.

Fedotov’s proposed new team the Philadelphia Flyers have said they are “aware” of the situation and are monitoring developments, although any move to the US for next season now seems unlikely.