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Russians Call Pyeongchang Ban Suggestion an Olympic Charter Violation

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A fan holding the Russian flag at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Evidence has confirmed a Russian whistle-blower’s claims of government-ordered cheating. Photo: David J. Phillip/Associated Press

The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) has claimed suggesting the country should be banned from the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Games is “flagrant violation” of the Olympic Charter.

According to Sputnik, German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) President Alfons Hoermann made the claim at a Session of the German Parliament’s Sport Committee.

This came after Hoermann told German magazine Die Welt in January that the option of banning Russia from the next two Olympic Games should be considered.

His claims come amid allegations a state-sponsored doping scheme was in operation in Russia.

In response, an ROC statement said: “In response to the official representative of the German Parliament to remove all Russian athletes from participating in the Olympic Games, the Russian Olympic Committee considers it necessary to state the following.

“The fundamental principles of Olympism are the autonomy and independence of sports organisations from any outside influence, as well as the inadmissibility of interference in the activities of members of the Olympic Movement, which is reflected in the United Nations General Assembly resolution of October 16, 2014.

“In this regard the ROC consider the application of the official representative of the German Bundestag as a flagrant violation of the principles of the Olympic Charter and the UN, and is extremely concerned about the attempts of German Parliamentarians to put pressure on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in order to prevent Russian athletes from competing at the XXIII Olympic Winter Games in 2018.

“We believe that such statements undermine the integrity of the international Olympic movement and are aimed at destabilization of the processes that are being implemented in accordance with the Olympic Charter of the IOC.”

In December Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren found that, as part of an alleged state-sponsored scheme, around 1,000 Russians had doping samples manipulated and tampered with between 2011 and 2015 at events including the 2014 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Sochi.

Two Swiss-run IOC Commissions chaired by Denis Oswald and former Swiss Confederation President, Samuel Schmid, are currently analyzing the evidence.

The IOC opted against banning Russia entirely from the Rio 2016 Olympics in August, instead deferring decisions on eligibility to the various International Federations.

A tougher approach was adopted by the International Paralympic Committee who issued a blanket ban.

According to Sputnik, Hoermann said it was “beyond belief” that some Russians had been able to compete in the Olympics in Brazil.

“There needs to a drastic correction of the course,” Hoermann told Die Welt in his January interview.

“Major sanctions are now needed, there is no doubt about that.

“There has to be a clear signal.

“Should it be confirmed that there was state doping in Russia and that the Russian Olympic Committee violated the IOC Charter then for me a complete ban of the entire Olympic team for Pyeongchang 2018 and possibly Tokyo 2020 should be an issue for the IOC.”

By Dan Palmer

Republished with permission from insidethegames.biz

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