On Wednesday, the IWF decided to withdraw two quotas from Russia at the upcoming Summer Olympics in Brazil over multiple anti-doping violations revealed in the combined re-analysis process of the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. In addition, Russia, along with Kazakhstan and Belarus, is facing a one-year suspension from participation in international weightlifting events.
"There are International Olympic Committee's (IOC) recommendations to defend clean athletes… But we need to understand who are clean athletes… You cannot punish an athlete who plays for the national team in 2016 for violations committed by another athlete in 2008. It is absurd, and each sane person understands that," Mutko told R-Sport.
In 2015, the WADA Independent Commission issued a report accusing Russia of numerous breaches of global anti-doping regulations, which led to the temporary suspension of Russian Athletic Federation's membership of the association, by the International Association of Athletes Federation (IAAF).