Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea

Russian Federation banned from 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea

To suspend the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) with immediate effect.

This year the team will be called Olympic athletes from Russian Federation.

The Olympic and Russian flaghs at the closing ceremony of the Sochi Winter Games in 2014. The New York Times is reporting that the International Olympic Committee has handed Russian Federation some stiff punishment for their systematic doping.

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Sochi Olympics, Dmitry Chernyshenko, also had his place on an Olympic panel overseeing the 2022 Beijing Winter Games withdrawn by the IOC.

The IOC also fined the Russian committee $15 million to pay for the doping investigation.

It said this confirmed the "unprecedented nature of the cheating scheme and, as a outcome, the exceptional damage to the integrity of the IOC, the Olympic Games and the entire Olympic Movement".

The commission based its findings on an independent report by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren that was commissioned by the World Anti-Doping Agency and published a year ago.

To exclude the then Minister of Sport, Mr Vitaly Mutko, and his then Deputy Minister, Mr. Yuri Nagornykh, from any participation in all future Olympic Games.

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Russia's doping program "represents an unprecedented attack on the integrity of the Olympic Games", IOC President Thomas Bach said following Tuesday's announcement. This was reported on the website of the International Olympic Committee.

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

The neutral-athlete sanction is based on the approach taken by athletics' world governing body the IAAF at the Rio Games in 2016 and at this summer's World Championships in London.

Bach said: "This should serve as a catalyst for a more effective anti-doping system led by Wada".

The Pyeongchang Games will begin in 66 days, on February 9th, and run until February 25th.

Meanwhile the credibility of the Russian whistleblower Grigory Rodchenkov, who ran the Moscow anti-doping laboratory before fleeing past year and revealing what he knew to McLaren, was recently enhanced by the Oswald commission, who confirmed that he was a "truthful witness".

Any Russian athlete hoping to earn invitations to Pyeongchang will have to come through a stricter-than-usual testing regime and not have a doping violation on their record.

However, the commission said it had not found "any documented, independent and impartial evidence confirming the support or the knowledge of this system by the highest State authority". "There were no flawless options, but this decision will clearly make it less likely that this ever happens again", it said. So far the figure stands at 25 athletes, with 11 medals stripped.

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