Lukashenka promises 'best in history' ice hockey world cup

"I can guarantee that the championship in Minsk will be the best championship in history. And it can be the best when there are no vacant seats in the stands. I would like to assure you that there will be no vacant seats at any match. I believe that you will be proud of this world championship,” BELTA quotes the Belarusian leader as saying.

Mr Lukashenka thanked Fasel and the International Ice Hockey Federation for the courage they had shown trying to preserve Minsk’s right to host the championship.  “I know about the pressure that was exercised on the International Federation. Our hockey players our proud of the IIHF President: he is a real man who said that sport and politics didn’t mix, that is why it was decided to organize the championship in Minsk anyway,” the president said.

Mr Fasel presented Sochi Olympic and Paralympic Games collection pucks to Lukashenka.