Crimean CS:GO players can’t participate in the World Electronic Sports Games (WESG) 2019 qualifiers.
Players from the amateur esports organization Hard Legion revealed earlier today that they can’t play in the tournament because Crimea isn’t listed as an eligible region under the WESG guidelines. Citizens from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iran, South Sudan, North Korea, and Syria also can’t participate, according to Hard Legion.
“A player from the Crimea does not have the right to participate in any WESG qualifications, that if a person who has any relation to the Crimea (registration in the passport, place of issue) submits his passport to participate in the qualifications, he may well be refused without explanation,” according to a statement from an organizer of WESG 2019 provided to Hard Legion.
Hard Legion is a relatively prominent CS:GO team. It features the former DreamEaters roster that rose to fame after finishing top-16 at the StarLadder Berlin Major in August. They were eliminated by Renegades and earned $8,750.
Recently, Hard Legion finished with a top-six placing at DreamHack Open Rotterdam 2019 after losing to Heroic twice, only managing to beat last-place finishers Besiktas.
Egor Morin, the manager of Hard Legion’s CS:GO squad, told Dot Esports that Dan Shatrov, who works for U Can Company—which is responsible for the CIS and Russian qualifier to WESG 2020—was asked about the decision. Shatrov said that because the players have Crimean passports or are registered in Crimea, they can’t play in the tournament.