Russian Federation asks International Olympic Committee to invite 15 athletes to Olympics

A FEB. 18 2014 FILE

The statement said CAS had found insufficient evidence that the 28 athletes banned by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), were guilty of anti-doping violations in Sochi.

CAS ruled on Thursday that there is insufficient evidence the 28 athletes had violated anti-doping rules at the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014.

The IOC previous year banned 43 Russians over doping offenses at the Sochi Olympics.

Sport's highest tribunal, the Court of Arbitration for Sport, earlier today overturned a ruling that barred 28 Russian athletes for life from participating in the Olympics.

Eleven other athletes were confirmed to have committed doping offences although CAS said it had reduced their lifetime Olympic bans to a suspension from this year's Games.

It will rule on the remaining 3 after the Winter Games.

A 17-month investigation by the World Anti-Doping Agency found "beyond reasonable doubt" that the Russian Ministry of Sport and its Olympic preparation team had allowed state-funded doping at Sochi.

But the International Olympic Committee, which has cleared 169 Russians to compete, said that "not being sanctioned does not automatically confer the privilege of an invitation".

The report also said there was a "systematic and centralized cover-up" that began before the London 2012 Summer Olympics and continued until 2015.




Just as people decry Amazon for massive tax avoidance and then promptly go back to shopping online, they are anti-doping but will not deny themselves the pleasure of the 100m final however much the facts suggest they are watching sporting fraud.

The IOC has, however, clarified that it doesn't mean that those athletes can now seek a late entry into the Winter Olympics.

"This is not only the Russian athletes who won, this is a victory for all the clean athletes who participate (in the Olympics), who have never taken doping, those who do not need doping".

It said it could challenge the CAS rulings at Switzerland's supreme court.

Russian President Vladimir Putin was extremely happy with the CAS ruling.

It concluded Russian athletes benefited from a state-sponsored doping programme between 2011 and 2015, speaking of "a cover-up that evolved from uncontrolled chaos to an institutionalised and disciplined medal-winning conspiracy".

In December, the IOC suspended the Russian Olympic Committee, preventing athletes from competing under their own flag while giving them a path to compete as "Olympic Athletes from Russia". "Now more than ever, there must be consistent and clear individual and collective sanctions written into the rules of all International Federations and sport bodies to ensure credibility of the sport system, and fairness for athletes where ever they live".

"I have said many times that I have never doped and do not dope now", he told Reuters.

"It's a big victory for them and I'm relieved that justice has finally been done", Philippe Baertsch, a lawyer for the athletes, told The Associated Press. "I think that's something that we should be celebrating and show our support for our athletes who are doing the right thing".

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