Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea
06 December, 2017, 00:23 | Author: Carla Brady
The decision stems from an ongoing investigation into state-sponsored Russian doping during the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi. The committee said it will allow athletes from the country to compete as neutrals at Pyeongchang Games.
The absence of Russian athletes would sap many events of top competitors.
To exclude the then Minister of Sport, Mr Vitaly Mutko, and his then Deputy Minister, Mr. Yuri Nagornykh, from any participation in all future Olympic Games.
The McLaren Report said more than 1,000 athletes participated in the scheme. Russian President Vladimir Putin has called the doping charges against Russia "a unsafe return to this policy of letting politics interfere with sport". Athletes approved by the panel will compete in a uniform with "Olympic Athlete from Russia" written on it and under an Olympic flag. The bans came as a result of an International Olympic Committee investigation into allegations of widespread doping among Russians and sample tampering by laboratory and security officials at the Sochi Olympics.
Russian athletes are among those targeted most with the nation awaiting the International Olympic Committee decision on its participation at February's Pyeongchang winter Olympics following the widespread doping scandal in the country.
President Vladimir V. Putin seemed to be predicting a boycott of the Pyeongchang Games, since his foreign policy in recent years has been based on the premise that he has rescued Russian Federation from the humiliation inflicted on it by the West after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The IOC has also banned Mutko and his deputy Yury Nagornykh from future games. due to their direct involvement with the state-sponsored doping. But Russia's success at those Olympics, according to former Moscow antidoping lab director Grigory Rodchenkov, came with some assistance behind the scenes.
Nations have in the past been barred from taking part in the Olympics, notably South Africa during the apartheid years, but none has ever been handed a ban over doping.
Russian officials reacted to the decision by attacking it as unfair.
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) sets up an independent commission headed by its former chief, Dick Pound, to investigate the claims.
A partnership agreement has been signed between the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) and the Russian International Olympic University (RIOU) to "fight against doping" in sport in the country. Investigators say Russian officials went to elaborate means to ensure a better showing - and it worked, as Russia's athletes more than doubled their medal count by winning 33 medals (13 of them gold), the most of any country.
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