Russian team suspended from Pyeongchang Winter Games, clean athletes may compete under Olympic flag

UNIAN 3

The International Olympic Committee’s Executive Board on Tuesday, December 5, discussed the report by the Commission led by former Swiss President Samuel Schmid addressing the systematic manipulation of the anti-doping system in Russia, according to the IOC website.

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The report also addressed in particular the manipulation at the anti-doping laboratory at the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014 which targeted the Olympic Games directly, IOC reports.

Over 17 months of extensive work, the Commission gathered evidence and information and held hearings with all the main actors. Due process, to which every individual and every organization is entitled, was followed, the report reads.

Read alsoMEP Harms urges to boycott 2018 World Cup in RussiaAfter discussing and approving the Schmid Report, the IOC EB took the following decision: “To suspend the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) with immediate effect.”

It was also decided to “invite individual Russian athletes under strict conditions (see below) to the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018.”

“These invited athletes will participate, be it in individual or team competitions, under the name ‘Olympic Athlete from Russia (OAR)’. They will compete with a uniform bearing this name and under the Olympic Flag. The Olympic Anthem will be played in any ceremony,” the statement says.

Read alsoRussian whistleblower Yuliya Stepanova has been hacked, WADA confirms IOC President Thomas Bach said: "This was an unprecedented attack on the integrity of the Olympic Games and sport. The IOC EB, after following due process, has issued proportional sanctions for this systemic manipulation while protecting the clean athletes. This should draw a line under this damaging episode and serve as a catalyst for a more effective anti-doping system led by WADA."