The RLIF has reacted strongly to recent events in Italy, where a rebel rugby league body recently confirmed a link-up with the Italian rugby union authorities.
The RLIF statement reads:
“On 14 April 2015 the Italian rugby union (FIR) issued its communique ‘no. 7’ which indicated that an association named Lega Italia Rugby Football League (LIRFL) has been appointed to administer rugby league and rugby league 9s under the aegis of FIR.
“The RLIF categorically rejects any infringement on the sovereignty of rugby league and consequently considers FIR’s action to be illegitimate.
“The RLIF has sole responsibility for setting rugby league’s universal standards, laws, regulations and practices, which are disseminated through its regional confederations and members.
“In Italy the sole legitimate authority for rugby league is the Federazione Italiana Rugby League.
“FIR has no jurisdiction over rugby league and the RLIF has written to the Italian Olympic Committee (CONI), FIR and World Rugby to confirm these facts.
“The body known as LIRFL is a rugby union entity without legitimacy, authority or credibility in the rugby league community.”