The Polish interior ministry announced on Saturday that Russian tennis player Vera Zvonareva was denied entry into Poland due to concerns regarding state security and public safety. Zvonareva, who won a bronze medal at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, was scheduled to participate in the BNP Paribas Warsaw Open tournament starting on Monday. However, the ministry stated that she was on a list of undesirable individuals and was using a visa issued by France to attempt entry into the country from Belgrade to Warsaw.
Zvonareva’s Transit and Departure
Upon landing in Poland on Friday, Zvonareva found herself in the transit zone of Warsaw Chopin Airport. Following her stay in the transit zone, she departed for Podgorica after 12:00 PM. The Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) acknowledged the situation and emphasized that the safety and well-being of all players is of paramount importance. The WTA further stated that Zvonareva had left Poland, and they would be assessing the issue in collaboration with the event organizers.
Poland’s Stance on Russia and Belarus
Poland has emerged as one of Ukraine’s most resolute allies since Russia’s invasion of the country in 2022. As a result, the country has been implementing measures to prevent the entry of individuals who support the actions of Russia and Belarus. Zvonareva’s inclusion on the list of undesirable persons is indicative of Poland’s commitment to safeguarding its state security and the well-being of its citizens.
At the time of writing, the tournament organizers had not responded to an email request for comment regarding Zvonareva’s situation. It remains to be seen how this incident will impact the BNP Paribas Warsaw Open tournament and whether any further actions or statements will be made by the organizers.
In summary, Russian tennis player Vera Zvonareva was barred from entering Poland due to concerns related to state security and public safety. The Polish interior ministry revealed that she was on a list of undesirable individuals and had attempted entry using a visa issued by France. Zvonareva stayed in the transit zone of Warsaw Chopin Airport before departing for Podgorica. The WTA expressed its awareness of the situation and prioritized the safety and well-being of all players. Poland’s staunch alliance with Ukraine and its refusal to admit individuals supporting Russia and Belarus played a significant role in this incident. The tournament organizers have yet to provide a response regarding the situation.