06:43 GMT20 October 2020
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    The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has found that a ban of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on the participation of Russian athletes with previous doping violations in the Rio Games is unenforceable in the case of rowers Karabelshikova and Podshivalov.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – On July 24, 2016, the IOC Executive Board issued criteria for the participation of Russian athletes in the Summer Olympics.

    One of the criteria (paragraph 3) was that the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) "is not allowed to enter any athlete for the Olympic Games Rio 2016 who has ever been sanctioned for doping, even if he or she has served the sanction."

    The CAS said in a Thursday release that the "IOC Decision deprives the Russian athletes of the presumption of innocence and rather establishes a presumption of guilt."

    Partially upholding the appeal of Russian rowers Karabelshikova and Podshivalov, the CAS ruled in the Anastasia Karabelshikova and Ivan Podshivalov v. FISA (international rowing federation) and IOC case that "paragraph 3 of the IOC Decision is unenforceable as it does not respect the athletes’ right of natural justice."

    Sports attorney Mikhail Prokopets earlier confirmed the decision of the CAS in the case of two Russian rowers, expressing hope that the Thursday ruling could help in the cases of other Russian athletes who were banned from the Rio Games because of the paragraph 3 clause.

    In July, the Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) prohibited all Russian athletes from taking part in international competitions, including the upcoming Rio Olympics, over doping allegations.

    The International Olympic Committee (IOC) later made a decision not to ban the entire Russian Olympic team from participating in the Rio Olympics, choosing to leave it to individual sports federations to decide on athletes' participation. However, Russian athletes who have had doping issues are not to be allowed to take part in the 2016 Games, according to the IOC.


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    CAS, Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), International Olympic Committee (IOC)
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