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by Will Teja on 06/18/2016 at 11:39 AM

IOC Backs IAAF Decision to Ban Russian Athletes

Russians banned by IAAF

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) offered its full support for the IAAF decisions to ban Russia’s team from Rio Olympics on Saturday 18th June 2016.

The IOC condemned doping emphasizing that critical measures against doping will need to be laid in place ahead of the Rio Olympics.

Having final authority over the Olympics, the IOC fully supported Friday’s ruling by the Track and Field’s World Governing body to uphold the ban on Russia due to rampant doping. The IOC said that the IAAF is responsible for determining the eligibility of the athletes in international competitions such as the Olympic Games. The committee also noted that the IAAF is also in charge of determining the track and field the athletes are qualified to compete at the games.

The firm stance by the IOC regarding the ban seemed to eliminate any chance of the IOC to amend the ruling. This is in spite of the speculation that the IOC could try to strike a compromise that would lead to the Russians who have not violated the anti-doping act competing in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

The acceptance of the IAFF’s decision and Jurisdiction over Russian athletes candidly indicated that the IOC will not interfere. Apparently, Russia’s recourse against the Federations Jurisdiction remains the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

The International Olympics Committee Vice President, John Coates, said that he didn’t think that the IOC would propose a compromise over the IAAF ruling.  According to John, he would be very surprised because “It’s an international federation’s right to suspend a national federation and I don’t think we would overturn that at all.”

Russians Rebuke the ruling

Head of the Russian Olympic Committee, Alexander Zhukov, said that there is barely any hope of canceling the IAAF’s decision.

Russian President, Vladimir Putin, condemned the IAAF’s decision terming it a ‘collective unfair punishment’.

Clemens Prokop, German’s track, and field federation president applauded the IAAF’s decision. He commended the IAAF saying that this ‘can only be a start and not the end of a worldwide struggle against doping.’ He recommended the expulsion of the entire Russian athlete’s team.

The statement by IOC seemed to fuel further sanctions against the Russian team and other athletes who will compete at Rio Olympics.

The IOC has proposed stern anti-doping measures to ascertain a level playing ground for the athletes participating in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics. This statement was issued soon after a teleconference meeting of the International Olympics Committee executive board.

This came only three days to the summit of the sports leaders summoned by IOC. The summit seeks to address eligibility issue for the games. It will also look into the difficult decision between individual justice and collective responsibility.

All may not be lost

There is, however, a slight window that would allow individual Russian athletes who are untainted by doping and have been subject to valid doping testing in other countries other than Russia, to compete in Rio Olympics. The IAAF notes that these would be very few and would be qualified to participate individually and not as Russia.

Russia’s track federation insists on the rights of the untainted athletes to compete claiming that they will certainly come back to the international arena.

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Doping athletes banned IAAF ruling IOC Rio Olympics Russian athletes

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