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Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympics over state-sponsored doping

06 December 2017

The IOC executive board chose to suspend the ROC with immediate effect.

However, the International Olympic Committee has said that some Russians will still be able to compete as neutral athletes at the games in Pyeongchang. But they will have to compete under the title of "Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR)". The Olympic Anthem will be played in any ceremony.

The IOC told a news conference that the Schmid report confirmed "the systematic manipulation of the anti-doping rules and system in Russian Federation".

No member of the leadership of the Russian Olympic Team at the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014 can be included on the invitation list.

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At the State Kremlin Palace on December 1, FIFA President Gianni Infantino said at a joint news conference with Mutko that the IOC's decision would not affect the World Cup.

Mutko, who was also banned from the Rio 2016 Summer Games, had been implicated in the WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency)-commissioned McLaren report. However no announcement has yet been made by the country's president, Vladimir Putin, or the Russian Olympic Committee.

The IOC's decision to choose a more moderate path, instead of a blanket ban, does offer some Russian athletes a path to competing in the Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea - although that will be by invitation only and dependent on a stringent testing programme.

"This was an unprecedented attack on the integrity of the Olympic Games and sport", IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement.

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The former head of Moscow's anti-doping laboratory, Grigory Rodchenkov, who is exiled in the United States, describes an organised doping campaign including at least 15 medallists from the Sochi Olympics, with the close involvement of the sports ministry and Russia's FSB security service, the successor to the KGB.

The Winter Olympics will be held from February 9-25.

According to reports, Russian officials have refused to accept the findings of the McLaren Report from the World Anti-Doping Agency. It wants the scientist extradited from the United States, where he is a protected witness. "Working with the IOC Athletes' Commission, we will now look for opportunities to make up for the moments they have missed on the finish line or on the podium".

Ahead of the anti-doping agencies of 17 countries, including the United States, had demanded the International Olympic Committee impose a blanket ban, issuing a collective statement in September that it was time for the body to stop "paying lip-service" to the anti-doping fight. Russian Federation is stripped of four 2014 titles, and a third of their 33 medals, including the two titles won by their Sochi flag carrier, bobsleigh star Alexander Zubkov.

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Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympics over state-sponsored doping