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Russia’s elaborate and extensive doping scheme during the 2014 Sochi Olympics has gotten them banned

Russia has been banned from the 2018 Olympics  under allegations of state-sponsored doping but the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said Russian competitors would be able to compete “under strict conditions”.
The IOC announced the decision today Tuesday Dec. 5th, 2017  after examining evidence of state-sponsored doping over several years that reached a high-point at the Winter Olympics hosted in Sochi, Russia, in 2014.
Nations have been barred in the past from taking part in the Olympics, notably South Africa during the apartheid years, but none has ever been handed a blanket ban over doping.
As a result of this ban, no Russian officials will be allowed to attend the games. Their flag will be excluded from any display, and if any “clean” Russian athletes are given permission to attend, they won’t be competing under the Russian flag. They’ll compete under the name “Olympic Athlete from Russia” (OAR) and the Olympic flag, any medals they win won’t be credited to Russia and the Olympic anthem will be played in any ceremony.
This was an unprecedented attack on the integrity of the Olympic Games and sport,” IOC president Thomas Bach said. “The IOC EB [executive board], 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 [World Anti-Doping Agency].”
The ban is far from the end of the story, though. Russia can appeal this decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, and the country is considering an all-out boycott. In fact, Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that an all-out ban would be “humiliating” for Russia, and could possibly provoke a boycott. Of course, since Russia is now completely banned from the games, a boycott doesn’t really seem like it would be that effective.


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Henriette Nshan Tem

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