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IIHF likely to extend Fasel’s presidency until 2021

Rene Fasel, IIHF president and member of the IOC Coordination Commission, speaks during the 4th Meeting of the IOC Coordination Commission for the 2022 Winter Olympic Games (by Xinyu Cui/Getty Images)

The International Ice Hockey Federation plans to postpone its presidential elections and extend the mandate of sitting president René Fasel for a further year due to the ongoing disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The IIHF’s member national associations had been scheduled to choose a new president and Council at a Semi-Annual Congress in St Petersburg, Russia, in late September, but its Council now proposes pushing this event back to an unspecified date in 2021.

The IIHF came up with the proposal during a video conference call on 19 May. The postponement will be voted on at a virtual IIHF Extra-Ordinary Congress on 24 June. The virtual event replaces the organisation’s Annual Congress that was due to be held during the 2020 World Championship in Zurich.

If accepted, the extension to Fasel’s presidential term will also apply to the IIHF’s Executive Board, Disciplinary Board, and various committees and working groups.

Fasel, a 70-year-old former ice hockey player from Switzerland, has served as the IIHF’s president since 1994. He is also a member of the International Olympic Committee and the winter sports representative on the IOC’s Executive Board.

During the same conference call, it was decided the IIHF Council will also submit a proposal to delay the start of the 2021 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship by two weeks in anticipation of expected delays to the start of the season for national leagues.