Friday, 16 November, 2018

Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Games for state-sponsored doping

Russian athletes Alexander Legkov and Maxim Vylegzhanin who won gold and silver respectively in the men’s 50 km mass start during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi were both found guilty of doping and stripped of their medals Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Games for state-sponsored doping
Rita Gibson | 05 December, 2017, 21:13

The International Olympic Committee on Tuesday suspended the Russian Olympic committee from the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Russia's move into wholesale Olympic cheating is often traced to 2010, when the country's athletes fell well short of expectations by winning only 15 medals at the Vancouver Winter Olympics - a bad omen as the country prepared to host the 2014 games in Sochi. Invited Russian athletes will compete under the name "Olympic Athlete from Russia" and under the Olympic flag.

It is the first time the International Olympic Committee has ever imposed a blanket ban on a country for doping.

While other nations' Olympics teams had questioned whether Russia should be allowed to participate, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Vitaly Mutko made a last-minute appeal to the committee, saying, "We are relying on common sense, on the IOC Charter, on the assumption that no one abolished the presumption of innocence".

Now, just two months ahead of the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, the IOC was forced to make the decision on Russian Federation again.

The report indicates Russian government officials are forbidden to attend, its flag will not be displayed at the opening ceremony and its anthem will not sound.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has previously said it would be humiliating for Russia to compete without national symbols.

US Trade Deficit Widens More Than Expected In October
So far this year, the United States is running a trade deficit of $462.9 billion, up 11.9 percent from a year earlier. Market expectations were for a trade deficit of C$2.70 billion, according to economists at Royal Bank of Canada.

Just 65 days ahead of the Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, IOC president Thomas Bach and his executive board were weighing various options on Russia's possible participation.

McLaren's report showed more than 1,000 Russian athletes were involved in a broader system to dope and cover up positive tests.

The Russian authorities have vehemently denied any state involvement in doping and pledged to work with global sports bodies to curb the use of banned performance-enhancing drugs in the country.

Russia's new drug testing body has not yet been accredited by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Some had feared a repeat performance from the International Olympic Committee on Tuesday, despite a second report by McLaren in December 2016 which confirmed that more than 1,000 Russian athletes had been involved in, or benefited from, state-sponsored doping.

As of Monday, 25 Russians have been disqualified from Sochi and 11 medals have been stripped.

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