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Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympic Games

Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympic Games

Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympic Games

In response, the IOC this week suspended the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), banned all ROC officials from the Winter Games to be held in South Korea in February, and will only allow invited Russian athletes to compete under the Olympic flag (i.e., not as representatives of their country).

Russian athletes who can prove their innocence of drug cheating will be permitted to compete in Pyeongchang under the designation of an "Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR)".

In the weeks ahead of the decision, the International Olympic Committee banned more than 20 Russian athletes for life from the Olympics as a result of an investigation into the alleged tampering of Russian athletes' positive tests by laboratory and security officials at the 2014 Sochi Games.

But given that the ban was not a blanket one, one expert, who wishes to remain anonymous, says the IOC's decision is fair as it gives the opportunity for a rehabilitated Russian Federation to rejoin the Olympic fold.

"It all looks like an absolutely orchestrated and politically-motivated decision ..."

Asked on Fox News if athletes from the United States would be able to compete, Haley said: "There's an open question".

Russian officials are expected to address the ban in a meeting next Tuesday.

According to the MP, "violations happen in all countries".

"The Canadian team will have the confidence that they're competing on a level playing field", COC president Tricia Smith said Tuesday.

"How am I supposed to be convinced that they're clean when every day there is a new scandal about a Russian athlete from Sochi who wasn't clean?"

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The three-time Olympian had led the charge for Canada's first Olympic medal in men's cross-country skiing for over a decade, finishing fourth in team sprint with teammate Alex Harvey at the 2010 Vancouver Games.

If you don't take a stand against the entire Russian system, you'll be setting the wrong kind of global precedent. They may get their rightful medals, and some will have another chance to compete, but that first moment can not be replayed, and they will not have the chance to stand on the podium or hear their national anthem.

Pro-Kremlin media focused on discrediting Grigory Rodchenkov, the whistleblower who gave evidence of a state-controlled doping programme in which he played a central role.

But IOC President Thomas Bach said, "An Olympic boycott has never achieved anything". To me, that means standing up to the Russian sport system and holding it accountable for its actions - just like athletes are.

However, Pyotr Tolstoy, deputy speaker of the State Duma, the Russian parliament's lower house, has called for a boycott.

"Requirements for Russian athletes are being particularly emphasized by the pre-Games testing task force, because of the situation and work of the commissions", he said.

Alexei Kravtsov, president of the Russian Skating Union, said: "The decision is offensive, insulting and completely unjustified". That itself was in response to the US -led boycott of the Moscow Olympics four years earlier.

"Punishment usually assumes that we have done something wrong, hence we have to change something", he told VOA Russian, referring to the International Olympic Committee ban.

- I do not think that it will have a significant impact, as elite sports is a separate topic. All it was done not to say that we need nothing now, especially since it will throw us off a few years in the framework of all world public sports movements. "We shouldn't be thinking that winning at any price shows the greatness of our motherland, but we rather have to think of fairness in sports'".

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