State Department announces international basketball exchange with Russia

The Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), in cooperation with the American Embassy in Moscow and USA Basketball, announced yesterday an international basketball exchange with Russia, according to the Department's website.

Twenty young American athletes and four coaches traveled to Russia on July 7 for a two-week exchange, which marks the fifth sports exchange under the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission since the initial exchange in May 2010 during which 24 young Russian basketball players came to Washington, DC.

The American participants will be hosted by the Russian Ministry of Sport, Tourism, and Youth Policy along with the Russian Basketball Federation and during their stay "will learn about Russian culture and take part in basketball clinics with local athletes," according to the State Department's media note.

The U.S.-Russia basketball exchange is part of the Department's sports diplomacy, which, according to its website "builds on Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton’s vision of ‘smart power’ diplomacy. It embraces the use of a full range of diplomatic tools, including sports, to bring people together for greater understanding."


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