ISU apologizes for nominating Auschwitz-themed skating costume for year-end award

Russia's Anton Shulepov performed in a Auschwitz-themed costume in November, and the ISU claims it accidentally nominated that costume for an end-of-year award. (Photo by JUNKO KIMURA-MATSUMOTO/AFP via Getty Images)

The International Skating Union apologized on Monday for nominating an Auschwitz-themed skating costume for its costume of the year award.

The costume was worn by Russian figure skater Anton Shulepov during a free skate set to the theme from “Schindler’s List.” It combines elements of uniforms worn by both prisoners and guards at Auschwitz, and prominently features a yellow Star of David. Over one million prisoners perished at the Nazi concentration camp, the deadliest of the 20 main concentration camps constructed by the Nazis.

Shulepov first wore the costume at the Internationaux de France skating competition in early November, which led to criticism from the figure skating community. He wore it again in late November when he competed at the ISU Grand Prix, but the greatest outcry came when Shulepov’s costume was among the nominees for costume of the year in the ISU’s skating awards.

The ISU released an apology on Monday via Twitter, claiming that an “error” caused them to nominate the wrong Shulepov costume.

The nomination for Shulepov’s Auschwitz-themed costume was withdrawn and replaced by Shulepov’s short program costume, which the ISU says they always intended to nominate. That statement is a little weird considering the costume they supposedly intended to nominate is a plain, basic ensemble of black pants, a navy blue long-sleeved jacket, and a red crushed velvet shirt underneath.

Russia's Anton Shulepov performs during the Men Short Program at the Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Sapporo on November 22. (Photo by JUNKO KIMURA-MATSUMOTO/AFP via Getty Images)

The ISU is sticking by its original statement, and has not released any additional comment about the nomination error.

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