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Russian athletes must participate under national flag at Rio 2016 — official

July 04, 17:03 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The Russian Olympic Committee insists in its lawsuit against IAAF that the country’s athletes must be allowed to participate in the 2016 Olympics under the national flag
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The Russian flag is raised during the closing ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi

The Russian flag is raised during the closing ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi

© AP Photo/Darron Cummings

MOSCOW, July 4. /TASS/. The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) insists in its lawsuit against IAAF that the country’s field and track athlete will be allowed to participate in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil under the national flag, a senior executive with the ROC said on Monday.

Following its session in Vienna on June 17, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) decided to keep in force the earlier imposed suspension of the All-Russia Athletics Federation’s (ARAF) membership in the global athletics body.

The suspension implied that Russian field and track athletes were ineligible to take part in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil except those, who proved to be doping-clean.

"Our lawsuit contains a broad list of claims," Alexandra Brilliantova, the head of the ROC’s legal department, said. "These claims do not only go for the cancellation of the illegal decision of the IAAF as of June 17, but reach for more."

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne announced earlier in the day that it received a filed lawsuit from the ROC against IAAF in defense of the national field and track athletes wishing to participate in the 2016 Summer Games.

"We want to settle the issue regarding which flag should the athletes be allowed to participate at the Olympics once and for all," she said.

The IAAF announced late last month that it amended the organization’s regulations in order to allow field and track athletes from Russia to submit individual applications for international tournaments.

The world’s governing body of athletics, however, emphasized that Russians, admitted to competitions on an individual basis, would be unable to perform as part of the national team and would participate only under the neutral flag.

July 4 was set as the deadline for the submission of individual applications, while the 2016 Summer Olympics are scheduled to be held in Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro between August 5 and 21.

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