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Russian sporting legend Rodnina slams ban on Paralympians

August 23, 18:36 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on Tuesday dismissed an appeal filed by the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) to fight the ban placed on Russian athletes from next month’s Paralympics in Rio
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Irina Rodnina

Irina Rodnina

© Artiom Korotaev/TASS

MOSCOW, August 23. /TASS/. The decision of the Committee of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to reject Russia’s appeal against the blanket ban imposed by Paralympics officials, has deprived Russian Paralympians of the point of life, says a triple Olympic gold medalist and a sporting legend Irina Rodnina

"I am more than sure that it is a wrongful decision, but the main thing is that it is inhumane," said Rodnina, who is also a State Duma parliamentarian. "Taking it out on physically challenged people, on people for whom it is not just sports of highest achievement, not a profession, but a possibility to feel they are individuals, ... to take part in competitions," she went on.

"Sport has become raison d’etre for many of them," Rodnina said.

"I think the state will not leave the athletes aside, some special competitions will be organized where they will compete, because they all were preparing for the Paralympic Games, they are in the best shape now," Rodnina said.

"I think they will also be supported financially. And what is most important - we will be fighting, as the whole Russian Paralympic Committee has been stripped of the right to participate in international competitions," she added.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on Tuesday dismissed an appeal filed by the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) to fight the ban placed on Russian athletes from next month’s Paralympic Games in Rio.

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) earlier suspended the RPC and barred Russian athletes from this year’s Games following the now-infamous report of the independent commission of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) led by Richard McLaren. The RPC filed an appeal to the CAS on August 15 against the suspension.

The Rio Paralympic Games are scheduled to be held from September 7 to 18.

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