Austria has become the latest nation to slam FIG over their move into parkour ©Getty Images

A group of Austrian organisations have backed Parkour UK's position on the alleged "encroachment and misappropriation" of parkour/freerunning by the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG).

The parkour community in the country has written an open letter, signed by 11 people, to FIG President Morinari Watanabe.

Letters have previously been written by the Danish-based Street Movement, Parkour Argentina and Parkour Singapore.

Similar moves have also been made by other parkour national governing bodies in France, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

The Finnish, German, Swedish and Swiss communities have also thrown their support behind Parkour UK's campaign, spearheaded by chief executive Eugene Minogue.

"This letter has been drafted by the leading parkour and freerunning organisations in Austria which have shaped and developed this art of movement and its community over the past 12 years," the Austrian letter reads.

"Parkour and freerunning has experienced a considerable increase in popularity and has flourished within the Austrian community ever since.

"One key element of this positive development has always been and will always be the autonomy and sovereignty of its practitioners.

"We feel the urgent need to clarify that we strongly object the recent encroachment and misinterpretation of parkour and freerunning by FIG.

"We will not give in to any corporate or institutional interests that curtail our practice's sovereignty.

"Hence, we will collectively ensure that the development or parkour and freerunning lies within the hands of those that have shaped it for years - its practitioners."

Gymnastics' world governing body has responded to the allegations of "encroachment and misappropriation" of parkour, claiming this was never their intention.

Minogue wrote to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to protest about the FIG trying to take control of the sport.

He has also promised that if a Memorandum of Understanding is not established before a deadline of July 26, or within an agreed period, then the sport would "take all necessary and appropriate steps to protect the integrity and sovereignty of the sport of parkour/freerunning, our sport, our community".

FIG were unsuccessful in their attempts to get parkour included on the Olympic programme for Tokyo 2020 at an IOC Executive Board meeting in Lausanne on June 9.

The FIG had hoped to see parkour named on the list, but their efforts proved unsuccessful.

The setback does not appear to have deterred the FIG though, as they have announced they will continue with plans to appoint a "Parkour Committee" which will be chaired by David Belle, the sport's founder, and include Charles Perrière, President of the Mouvement International du Parkour.

The "Road Map for Parkour" - drawn-up by the FIG as part of its plans for the sport - also seeks to provide the staging of a series of Parkour World Cups in 2018 and 2019 together with a first FIG World Championships planned in 2020.

The FIG recently held its inaugural Obstacle Course World Cup in Montpellier as part of the International Festival of Extreme Sports (FISE) in the French city.

The event was marketed as parkour on the FISE website.