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Minister: Banning Russia from Rio Olympics to return sports to ‘time of boycotts’

May 24, 12:03 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The Russian national team could be banned from the upcoming Olympic Games in Brazil due on August 5-21 amid several major doping scandals in the country’s sports
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Russian Sports minister Vitaly Mutko

Russian Sports minister Vitaly Mutko

© Artyom Korotayev/TASS

MOSCOW, May 24. /TASS/. Barring the entire Russian squad from the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro will return sports to the 1980s when national teams boycotted competitions for political reasons, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko told reporters on Tuesday.

The Russian national team could be banned from the upcoming Olympic Games in Brazil due on August 5-21 amid several major doping scandals in the country’s sports.

"If the whole team is suspended from participation in the Olympic Games, then this will return everything to the time when there were boycotts. I want to stress that the state has never supported people using doping," Mutko said.

The 1980 Summer Olympic Games in Moscow were marred by a boycott on behalf of a number of foreign countries, including the United States, in protest of Soviet military presence in Afghanistan.

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