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Space Foundation censors name of Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, citing Russian invasion of Ukraine: Details

The Space Foundation has removed the name of Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin from its space industry conference, three weeks after Russia invaded Ukraine.

Three weeks after Russia declared a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the Space Foundation has removed the name of Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin from its space industry conference. It must be mentioned that Gagarin was the first human in history to travel to outer space.

As per a report published by Futurism, the nonprofit advocacy organization declared that it would rename a fundraiser named after the late Soviet cosmonaut in light of the ‘current world events.’

Citing the geopolitical conflict and the aggression of the Russian Federation as the reason, the Space Foundation changed the name of the fundraiser at its 37th Space Symposium Conference to ‘A Celebration of Space: Discover What’s next’ from ‘Yuri’s night.’

It added in a now-deleted note, “The focus of this fundraising event remains the same — to celebrate human achievements in space while inspiring the next generation to reach for the stars.”

The report by Futurism pointed out, “It’s a rather dubious show of solidarity with the Ukrainian people, especially considering that Gagarin worked for the USSR, a completely different country from modern-day Russia. And the icing on the cake? Ukraine actually appears to be rather fond of Gagarin and his monumental achievement.”

In 2011, Ukraine released a stamp commemorating the 50th anniversary of the historic flight undertaken by Yuri Gagarin on April 12, 1961. Moreover, the Chernihiv Stadium in Ukraine was earlier named the Yuri Gagarin Stadium and it is still known by the same name.

In 2013, Ukrananian street artist Andrey Palval paid tribute to the deceased Soviet cosmonaut.

Ukraine invasion and the rise of Xenophobia against Russians

The rising Anti-Russian sentiment has not restricted itself to the educational and intellectual circles but has spread like fire in the arenas of culture, entertainment and sports. OpIndia had earlier reported on how calls were given to bar Russian players from international leagues – more so by the international sports bodies themselves.

The institutionalised politicization of sports has ensured that Russia and its players are banned in the FIFA and UEFA football tournaments by football governing bodies in Europe. Earlier, a Democratic representative from California, Eric Swalwell, suggested that Russian students should be ‘kicked out‘ of US universities.

The U.S. life insurance company, MassMutual pulled out an ad featuring hockey team Washington Capitals’ Russian captain Alexander Ovechkin. The European Broadcasting Union (EBU) has happily announced that Russia would no longer be allowed to participate in a leading annual singing contest hosted in the continent. 

Many concerts, performances of Russian artists, classical presentations including ballet performances have been cancelled en masse in Europe while taking political stances against the state of Russia. 

Film companies including Warner Bros, Disney and Sony Pictures have halted the release of their films in Russian cinemas. Going ahead, The Ukrainian Film Academy has called for an international boycott of Russian cinema, including a ban on Russian films at international film festivals.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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