Olympics: 'Clean' Russian athletes can compete in Rio as neutrals: IAAF

Russian athletes who can prove they are untainted by the country's doping scandal will be able to participate in the Rio Games as "neutrals", said the IAAF on June 23, 2016.
Russian athletes who can prove they are untainted by the country's doping scandal will be able to participate in the Rio Games as "neutrals", said the IAAF on June 23, 2016.PHOTO: EPA

MONACO (AFP) - Russian athletes who can prove they are untainted by the country's doping scandal were on Thursday (June23) given the go-ahead to compete at the Rio Olympics but as neutrals and not under their national flag, the IAAF said.

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Council decided last week to maintain the suspension of Russia after findings of drug test violations, including ignored positives and altered test results.

But clean athletes have now been offered an olive branch.

"If there are any individual athletes who can clearly and convincingly show that they are not tainted by the Russian system because they have been outside the country and subject to other effective anti-doping systems, then they should be able to apply for permission to compete in international competitions, not for Russia but as a neutral athlete," said an IAAF statement.