Kremlin backs decision to send Russian athletes to 2018 Olympics under neutral status

Kremlin backs decision to send Russian athletes to 2018 Olympics under neutral status

Russia's President Vladimir Putin backs the decision made by the Olympic Assembly of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) to clear national athletes for participation in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea under the neutral status, the Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

According to Peskov, Putin already stated earlier that there would be no obstacles in the way of Russian athletes if they made a personal decision on traveling to South Korea’s PyeongChang for the 2018 Winter Games, TASS reported.

On Monday, a commission of ROC athletes issued a common statement on behalf of Russia’s winter sports athletes explaining their stance in favor of participation in the 2018 Olympics in PyeongChang under the neutral flag.

On December 5, the Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) banned the Russian national team from taking part in the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in South Korea’s PyeongChang over multiple doping abuse allegations. The IOC noted that doping-free athletes from Russia could go to the 2018 Olympic Games under the classification of neutral athletes, or the OAR status, which stands for ‘Olympic Athlete from Russia.’

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