Russia Banned from 2018 Winter Olympics by IOC
Russia has been banned from competing at next year’s Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang by the International Olympic Committee over allegations of state-sponsored doping at the 2014 Games hosted in Sochi.
Russian athletes were however handed a lifeline by the IOC who have allowed them to compete in a uniform bearing the name “Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR)” provided they can prove they were not involved in a state-sponsored doping programme, BBC writes.
Following the ruling, Russia’s former Minister of Sport, Vitaly Mutko, and his then deputy minister, Yuri Nagornykh, have been banned from participating in all future Olympic Games despite their strong denial of the doping allegations.
“This should draw a line under this damaging episode,” the IOC said in an announcement made by its president, Thomas Bach in Lausanne on Tuesday.
Bach and his board have come to their decision after reading through the findings and recommendations of a 17-month investigation headed by the former president of Switzerland, Samuel Schmid.
The Schmid report found evidence of “the systemic manipulation of the anti-doping rules and system” which back up previous allegations of government involvement in cheating in the run up to and during the Winter Olympics almost four years ago.
Bach said: “This should serve as a catalyst for a more effective anti-doping system led by Wada.”
As it stands, the Games in South Korea, which start on 9 February, will now be without one of the powerhouses of Olympic sport.
Nigeria meanwhile, will be represented in Pyeongchang after the female bobsled team made history last month by becoming the first African side to qualify for the Winter Olympic Games.
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