Putin: Russia's Suspension from Olympics is Politically Motivated

Putin: Russia's Suspension from Olympics is Politically Motivated

Putin: Russia's Suspension from Olympics is Politically Motivated

Although Russian athletes will be allowed to compete in Pyeongchang under the Olympic flag, and under strict conditions, the move to exclude a country over doping by the IOC on Tuesday was unprecedented.

"I would still go because I know the Russian fans will be at the tournament and if you win the medal, they will sing the national anthem for you", he said.

"The system is being punished ... the conspiracy is being addressed and sanctioned and if there are clean athletes who can prove they're clean, they still have a chance to compete".

The IOC also demands that the ROC reimburse the 15 million United States dollars that covered the costs of the investigation and upcoming Independent Testing Agency (ITA) in order to discourage both Russian Federation and other nations from taking similar actions in the future.

"They have been preparing for these competitions for their whole careers, and for them it's very important", he said.

'Without any doubt we will not declare any kind of blockade, ' Putin said. "Most of the accusations are based on claims which have not been proven and are largely unfounded", he added.

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. He repeated denials that any state sponsored doping programme had existed in Russian Federation.

International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach speaks.

The Schmid report said the International Olympic Committee had "not found any documented, independent and impartial evidence confirming the support or the knowledge of this (anti-doping manipulation) system by the highest State authority" after Richard McLaren's independent report for the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) had said the Russian government and secret service were involved.

Schmid's commission said it had confirmed a system described in the investigations conducted by the Canadian lawyer, Richard McLaren for the World Anti-Doping Agency, that found the head of Russia's anti-doping laboratory had secretly switched out dirty samples from Russian athletes during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi with the help of the country's FSB intelligence service.

"There are no winners in today's decision", she said.

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The CEO of the Sochi Olympics, Dmitry Chernyshenko, also had his place on an Olympic panel overseeing the 2022 Beijing Winter Games withdrawn by the IOC.

It's not yet clear if Russian athletes plan to challenge those requirements in court.

Those Russian athletes that agree to compete under a neutral flag will wear special uniforms with the name "Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR)". Only athletes with no doping record will be permitted to compete.

The IOC's decision was met with an eruption of irate denunciations from Russian officials, who attacked it as unfair and as part of a Western plot.

"They are always trying to put us down in everything - our way of life, our culture, our history and now our sport", Maria Zakharova, the spokeswoman for the Russian foreign ministry, wrote in a Facebook post.

A separate panel will determine the eligibility of Russian athletes at Pyeongchang 2018.

The IOC is ordering Russia's athletes to show they are clean of any doping.

But Calgary curler Chelsea Carey was less forgiving, saying she's not comfortable with allowing Russians to compete as neutrals because they're not being held to the same standard as her.

"All our sports officials, including the Russian Olympic Committee, ought to be personally accountable for the ban on Russia and ought to step down", Poletayev said in comments carried by the RIA Novosti news agency.

"I have prepared for this for 4 years".

"I hope that this Russian case remains a unique case", he said.

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