International Olympic Committee considering appeal against controversial ruling on Russian doping bans

Pauline Gross
February 9, 2018

The IOC last month said 169 Russian athletes had been invited to compete at the Winter Games as "neutrals" who would be identified as "Olympic athletes from Russia", wear neutral uniforms and participate under the Olympic flag.

How many independent Russian athletes will compete at Pyeongchang is still unclear as the CAS continues to hear and deliberate the appeals of 47 individuals demanding to be reinstated from doping bans stemming from the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

As well as Ahn, a six-time short-track Olympic champion, the group includes Sochi 2014 biathlon gold medallist Anton Shipulin and Sergei Ustyugov, a cross-country skiing world champion.

They include multiple Olympic champion speed skater Viktor Ahn, biathlon gold medallist Anton Shipulin and former National Hockey League players Sergei Plotnikov, Anton Belov and Valeri Nichushkin.

The 13 athletes and two coaches were initially blacklisted by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) which said they were not "clean".

Eleven other athletes were ruled to have been guilty of doping but had lifetime bans cut to just a ban from South Korea's Olympics. 'We feel that this decision shows the urgent need for reforms in the internal structure of CAS'.

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The 15 were among 28 Russian athletes whose doping charges were dropped and life-time Olympic bans rescinded by CAS Thursday.

Moon said that the PyeongChang Olympics is set to open thanks to efforts by the IOC which has repeatedly confirmed that dialogue and peace coincide with the Olympic spirit. "If their appeals are upheld, their participation will be granted and it will be the end, I think".

The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) claim not to know exactly what was said, nor whether the incident involved an athlete, coach or support personnel.

The IOC will hope to shift the focus to good news as North Korean and South Korean athletes compete alongside each other under a symbolic deal aimed at easing tension on the Korean peninsula.

Pozdnyakov said he could not comment on the ongoing hearings, but that he would be glad to see additional members of the Russian delegation in Pyeongchang.

Also among them is speed skater Denis Yuskov, who served a ban for marijuana, and the biathletes Irina Starykh and Aleksandr Loginov, who previously had been banned for use of the blood-booster EPO.

Other reports by GizPress

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