GENEVA - FIFA has apologised for an embarrassing diplomatic faux-pas when its video launching the 2018 World Cup logo portrayed the Crimean peninsula as part of Russia.
The disputed clip was beamed on to the facade of Russia's historic Bolshoi Theatre at the official unveiling of the 2018 logo in the Russian capital on Tuesday.
The strategic peninsula of Crimea, long home to Russian military bases, was annexed from Ukraine by Russia in March, sparking the worst crisis between Russia and the West since the Cold War.
World football's governing body issued a statement blaming the blunder on a local video production agency.
"Unfortunately the map of Russia selected and used during the projection by the local service provider escaped our attention and the short sequence in question has been removed," a FIFA spokesman said.
The slip-up came at a sensitive time with FIFA trying to find a solution to the Crimea club crisis.
Russia has incorporated teams based in Crimea in its third division, a move hotly disputed by the Ukrainian football federation.