Asian Sambo Union director Suresh Gopi delivered a report on the inclusion and exclusion of members during the FIAS Congress ©FIAS

Costa Rica and Uruguay have become full-time members of the International Sambo Federation (FIAS), it has been announced.

The two Pan American nations join the 15 others in the region that are already recognised as such. 

This was confirmed following the FIAS Congress, which was held here in Sochi prior to the 2017 World Sambo Championships.

Hong Kong has also been given probationary member status.

As well as reporting on the inclusion of potential new FIAS members, Asian Sambo Union director Suresh Gopi also spoke about the candidates for exclusion.

Among them are Sierra Leone and Portugal, who are said to have shown "waning activity" in the promotion of the sport.

Sambo is being practiced worldwide ©FIAS
Sambo is being practiced worldwide ©FIAS

During last year’s Congress in Bulgaria’s capital Sofia, full FIAS membership was granted to Canada, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and The Philippines.

Additionally, both Costa Rica and Macau were awarded provisional membership.

Vasily Shestakov vowed to achieve sambo's "dream" of achieving recognition from the International Olympic Committee after being unanimously re-elected unopposed as FIAS President at the Congress.

The Russian, first elected to the post in 2009, was nominated by All-Russian Sambo Federation President Sergey Eliseev and received the backing of all 80 of the FIAS member federations that voted.

The coming four years will be Shestakov's last with FIAS Presidents only permitted to serve three consecutive terms of that length in office.