ESL Bans CS:GO Orgs With Ties to Russian Govt From ESL Pro League 15
ESL has come forward with its statement on the Ukraine crisis.
One of the biggest esports tournament organizers in the world, ESL has issued a statement in regards to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. For the upcoming ESL Pro League Season 15 which is scheduled to take place from March 9th to April 10th, ESL has decided to ban all organizations with apparent ties to the Russian government, "including individuals or organizations under alleged or confirmed EU sanctions related to the conflict".
This decision will be affecting two non-partnered CS:GO teams, Gambit Esports and Virtus.pro, who had managed to qualify for the tournament via ESL World Ranking.
Further, ESL has also decided to stop all scheduled tournaments in the CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) region, "out of respect for the situation."
CS:GO teams Virtus.pro and Gambit affected by ESL's decision on Ukraine crisis
ESL's decision to ban organizations with ties to the Russian government at the upcoming ESL Pro League Season 15 will be affecting two participating CS:GO teams - Gambit Esports and Virtus.pro.
However, ESL recognizes that the players are not the ones in the wrong in this situation, so imposing sanctions on individual players is something that they consider is not in the spirit of the game. For this reason players of Virtus.pro and Gambit Esports are allowed to compete in the tournament under a neutral name, without representing their country, organization, or any of their team's sponsors (on their clothes or otherwise).
We are all shocked and saddened by the Russian invasion into Ukraine and hope for a swift and peaceful resolution. After monitoring the situation, we are now putting an initial set of actions in place.Statement by ESL
Additionally, ESL has said that it is currently working on actions to support its people who are suffering from the current tragedy with donations to the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees), paid time off to its employees who are volunteering for humanitarian relief and also to its affected colleagues.
For now, ESL Pro League Season 15 is the only CS:GO tournament which is covered under the current guidelines. But ESL will continue to monitor and evaluate future competitions, making further decisions as the situation evolves.