New 'sanction' against Russian cats shocks Chinese netizens, trending top on social media
Published: Mar 02, 2022 05:23 PM
Cats Photo: VCG

Cats Photo: VCG

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An international cat fancier society decided to slap harsh restrictions against cats bred in Russia and those belonging to people living in Russia, a latest sanction amid Russia-Ukraine conflict that shocked Chinese netizens, which is trending top on Chinese social media with many netizens questioning "what's all this crisis going on with animals?" 

The NGO, FIFe Executive Board, claimed in its latest statement that they were "shocked and horrified" by the Russia-Ukraine conflict, and they felt they cannot just witness these "atrocities" and do nothing.

The organization decided that as of Tuesday "no cat bred in Russia may be imported and registered in any FIFe pedigree book outside Russia, regardless of which organization issued its pedigree." Also, "no cat belonging to exhibitors living in Russia may be entered at any FIFe show outside Russia, regardless of which organization these exhibitors hold their membership in."

The statement noted that the restrictions are valid until May 31 and will be reviewed when necessary. The announcement immediately went viral on Chinese social media platform Sina Weibo.

"What's all this [Russia-Ukraine conflict] going on with cats?" questioned one netizen. The comment received many likes.

"I thought it was fake news …" said another, adding that they could not believe a sanction of that nature would be imposed on Russia.

"Does the north wind that blows across Russia to the EU count as Russian wind? Insane," read another comment.

"Will the Tetris be banned in the West?" a netizen asked.

Recently, a series of international sports organizations have sanctioned Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin has been stripped of an honorary black belt by World Taekwondo; ISU said it will exclude Russian and Belarusian skaters from the forthcoming World Championships; and FIFA/UEFA suspended Russian clubs and national teams from all competitions.

The decisions by these sports bodies triggered some netizens to question the authenticity of the popular slogan "No politics in sport." Some asked, "does this slogan, widely advocated by the West, still count?"

Besides the usual Western countries led by the US that are always eager to stir up conflicts, Switzerland, a country that usually remains neutral on many international issues, abandoned that principle to join in on the Western push for sanctions. 

Experts warn that abandoning neutrality, especially by sports bodies, will have grave consequences in the future. 

"Those NGOs and international organizations should be non-political," Cui Heng, an assistant research fellow from the Center for Russian Studies of East China Normal University, told the Global Times on Wednesday. 

All those external pressure would further weigh on the current tensions in Ukraine, he said.

The trend has also spread to academia. W, a Chinese university student in the UK, said that she was shocked to receive an email from the school's vice president using the email address of the "student communications" to call on students to "stand with Ukraine."

"Why stand with 'Ukraine' instead of 'Ukrainians'… What about the Russian students in our school?" she posted on her social media platforms. "I have an uncomfortable feeling of being represented," she told the Global Times.

Some of W's schoolmates have responded to the email to express their opinions.