MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Russian Sports Minister Pavel Kolobkov has announced that Moscow would provide legal, financial and moral support to athletes who would participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, as well as to those who cannot go.
The Kremlin has also approved the decision of the Russian Olympic Assembly to support the participation of Russian athletes under the Olympic flag.
"President Putin said last week if you remember, he said that nobody should create any obstacles for those athletes who want to go under the neutral flag, he said that based on this stance he was awaiting the Olympic Assembly where a corresponding decision would be made," Peskov said.
While speaking about the number of athletes eligible for the participation in the Olympics, Head of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) Alexander Zhukov, that more than 200 Russian athletes potentially had licenses to participate in the competition, but the International Olympic Committee (IOC) would determine the specific composition.
On December 5, the International Olympic Committee allowed clean Russian athletes to perform at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang under the Olympic flag. Following the decision, the commission of athletes of the Russian Olympic Committee announced Monday that it would support those Russian athletes who expressed their readiness to take part in the Olympics.
The same day, the Russian Olympic Committee's (ROC) Athletes Commission drafted an appeal to the IOC President Thomas Bach with a request to review the decision on the Russian national team's participation in the 2018 Olympic Games without the national anthem and flag.