• Switzerland's news in English
IOC bans Putin ally from Rio Olympics
President Putin with Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko. Photo: Alexei Druchinin/Ria Novosti/AFP

IOC bans Putin ally from Rio Olympics

AFP · 20 Jul 2016, 08:17

Published: 20 Jul 2016 08:17 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

With the Rio Games due to start on August 5th, the Lausanne-based IOC executive committee held emergency talks on Tuesday on what Olympic president Thomas Bach called a "shocking and unprecedented attack on the integrity of sport and on the Olympic Games" by the Russian government.
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which commissioned an independent inquiry into Russian doping, has led international calls for Russia to be banned from Rio over revelations of widespread state-run doping at the Sochi Winter Olympics and other major events in Russia.
But the IOC said after the talks it will first "explore the legal options with regard to a collective ban of all Russian athletes for the Olympic Games 2016 versus the right to individual justice."
It is also waiting on a Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) ruling on Thursday on an appeal by 68 Russian athletes against an IAAF ban from the Rio competition.

Mutko barred

The controversial Mutko, a long-time ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, was the highest-profile casualty of the first sanctions as the IOC grapples with the biggest doping scandal in Olympic history.
He has denied any wrongdoing and said he expects his deputy to be cleared as well.
But the IOC ordered a disciplinary commission to look into his ministry's role in what Monday's report called a "state-dictated failsafe system" of drug cheating that included Russia's secret service swapping dirty urine samples for clean ones through a hole in a wall in Sochi.
Lead investigator Richard McLaren says he has conclusive evidence that the four-year doping scheme was directed by the sports ministry with the FSB intelligence agency.
As a consequence, the IOC said it will not grant any Rio accreditation "to any official of the Russian Ministry of Sport or any person implicated in the (McLaren) report."
That includes Mutko, who has denied that the government directed the doping programme. He told the Interfax news agency he was hoping for a "reasonable" decision from the IOC on Russia's participation in Rio.
Mutko said he has suspended five top deputies, including his number two Yury Nagornykh, described as the point man for running the cheating scheme.

Key ruling due

WADA, the German Olympic committee and anti-doping bodies have backed calls for Russia's outright ban from Rio -- that would be the first time a country has been banned from an Olympic Games over doping.
But the Association of Summer Olympic Federations and other groups have urged caution, pointing to the ethical issues of punishing athletes who have never failed drug tests.
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has already barred Russian track and field contenders from Rio after an inquiry into widespread state-sponsored doping in the sport.
The CAS will rule on whether the IAAF had grounds to impose a blanket ban on a national federation, since such a suspension inevitably punished athletes with no positive drug test on their record.
IAAF president Sebastian Coe attended a CAS hearing in Geneva on Tuesday ahead of the ruling.
IOC executives also ordered a reanalysis of all samples by Russian athletes taken at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, vowing punishment against anyone who helped competitors cheat.
Because the Sochi Games are so tainted, the IOC said it would not give backing to any international sports events in Russia.
It called on "all International Olympic Winter Sports Federations to freeze their preparations for major events in Russia."
This includes world championships and World Cups, the IOC said, calling for winter federations "to actively look for alternative organizers."

In hiding

The Russian Olympic Committee has acknowledged doping problems but insists that collective punishment against possibly clean athletes would leave "the integrity of the Olympic Movement... endangered."
Senior sports and political leaders in Moscow have also questioned the credibility of McLaren's key witness, the former boss of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory Grigory Rodchenkov, who admits he was central to the cheating scheme.
Rodchenkov is in hiding in the United States and is wanted by Russia.
McLaren said his team uncovered forensic evidence that proved Rodchenkov's claims that Moscow set up a cheating system following the country's poor performance at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games.

For more news from Switzerland, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Villagers asked to help fund bridge renovations
The bridge links the two villages of Veltheim (pictured) and Holderbank. Photo: Lutz Fischer-Lamprecht

The crowdfunding campaign by the two communes is the first of its kind in Switzerland.

Police discover body buried in Orbe house
File photo: Bas Leenders

Police have opened an investigation after finding a body buried in a house in Orbe, in the canton of Vaud, on Saturday.

Valais shaken by 4.2 magnitude earthquake
The earthquake hit in the canton of Valais near Sierre. Photo: Alain Rouiller

It's the biggest earthquake to hit the country for two years.

Swiss Indoors kicks off without champ Federer
Federer celebrates with ball girls and boys after winning the event in 2015. Photo: Harold Cunningham/Pool/AFP

Stan Wawrinka is top seed as injured Federer sits it out.

IOC hires Russian doping whistleblower as consultant
IOC President Thomas Bach confirmed the news. File photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has hired Vitaly Stepanov as a consultant and is helping his runner wife Yuliya.

‘Scary clown’ craze hits streets of Zurich
Photo: Pedro Pardo/AFP

Police in Zurich have warned so-called ‘scary clowns’ that they could face charges, following a number of incidents in the city.

VIDEO: driver chases runaway car on Swiss motorway
Image: Neuchâtel police

Shocking footage shows the moment a man dodged lorries to chase after his runaway car on a Swiss motorway.

Saas-Fee crowdfunds low-cost season ski pass
Saas-Fee is hoping to attract 99,999 season pass holders. Photo: Denis Emery/Photo-genic.ch

Skiers could get their hands on a whole season pass for just 222 francs ($223) in the Swiss resort of Saas Fee this winter – if enough people want one.

Swiss billionaire fined for dodging import tax
Urs Schwarzenbach owns the luxury Dolder Grand hotel in Zurich. Photo: Wilhem Rosenkranz

Urs Schwarzenbach faces a $4 million fine for failing to properly declare some 200 artworks imported into Switzerland.

Muslim woman wins headscarf court battle
Photo: Jack Guez / AFP

A Swiss court has ruled against a company that fired a longtime employee after she began wearing the Muslim headscarf.

Photo: Richard Juilliard/AFP
Man makes Geneva airport bomb threat ‘for a joke’
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Photo: AFP
Solar Impulse team reveals plans for unmanned plane
File photo: Martin Abegglen
Swiss to vote on passport rules for 3rd gen foreigners
Photo: AFP
Swiss wingsuit hotspot Lauterbrunnen won’t impose ban
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Six reasons Switzerland isn’t as boring as you might think
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Report: Switzerland one of world’s best places for girls
Photo: The Local
Thief returns Swiss cow bells worth thousands
File photo: Wikimedia Commons
One in three rapists isn’t locked up: statistics
Photo: activistin.ch
Tampon-tax protest turns Zurich fountains red
Photo: AFP
Geneva police to lift ban on bearded officers
Photo: Marcel Gillieron/AFP
Suicide chef’s restaurant keeps Michelin stars
Photo: Lara de Salis
11 things the Swiss get tired of hearing abroad
Photo:  Ivo Scholz/Swiss-image.ch
Survey: expats in Switzerland have money but few friends
Photo: AFP
Swiss press criticize Bern’s 'capitulation' on immigration
Photo: Jura Trois Lacs tourism
German ex-policeman is Swiss city’s new hermit
Photo: Dmitry A. Mottl
Ticino votes to favour local workers over foreigners
Photo: file
Some deodorants could cause breast cancer: Swiss study
Photo: Royal Savoy
In pictures: Inside the latest Swiss luxury hotel
Photo: AFP
Geneva airport bomb hoaxer faces 90,000-franc bill
Photo: Schaffhausen police
Mother leaves toddler son alone in car to go clubbing
Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP
Swiss populist attacked by knife-wielding pensioner
jobs available