ICSD Revokes Valery Rukhledev's Medal of Honor

Lausanne, 28 March 2023

The Executive Board of the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf (ICSD) announces the withdrawal of the Medal of Honor previously awarded to Mr Valery Rukhledev, 9th President of the ICSD (2013-2018).

This decision follows Mr Rukhledev's recent sentencing by the Khamovniki Court in Moscow, Russia, on 22 March 2023. Mr Rukhledev has been sentenced to seven years in a penal colony for his involvement in a multi-million dollar fraud case within the All-Russian Society of the Deaf (VOG), which he presided between 2003 and 2018.

The ICSD Executive Board places great importance on the integrity of the organisation and the defence of the international deaf sports community. The ICSD maintains a strict Code of Ethics in accordance with the practices of the International Olympic Committee, which it is committed to enforcing for all individuals associated with the ICSD, including past recipients of ICSD awards. In 2017, Mr Rukhledev was awarded the ICSD Medal of Honor in recognition of his contributions to international deaf sports. However, in light of his conviction and subsequent sentencing, the ICSD Executive Board has determined that Mr Rukhledev no longer meets the criteria for this esteemed award. Effective immediately, the ICSD revokes Mr Rukhledev's Medal of Honor.

The ICSD Executive Board emphasises that Mr Rukhledev was placed under house arrest in 2018, and the legal process has now concluded with the aforementioned sentencing. Although no decision had been made in Mr Rukhledev's case based on the presumption of innocence, this matter is now considered resolved. The ICSD Executive Board has taken steps to remove Mr Rukhledev's name from the list of ICSD Medal of Honor recipients and requests the return of the award to the organisation.