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Competitive Video Gaming Becomes Official Sport in Russia

Russia has officially recognized competitive video gaming as a form of sport, a document published on the government's legal information portal announced Thursday.

The decree will allow gamers to conduct official e-sport competitions, the Russian Federation of Computer Sport said in a statement Wednesday. Cyber-athletes will also be able to receive official sporting titles.

E-sport previously gained official recognition in Russia in 2001, but was excluded from the list by the Sports Ministry five years later for failing to meet certain requirements.

Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov invested more than $100 million in the development of e-sport in the country in October last year. The investment is aimed at boosting popularity of computer sport in Russia and will be used for building e-gaming arenas and creating media channels to cover the events, Usmanov's company USM Holdings said in a statement.

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