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Azerbaijan rejects vacant quotas of barred Russian Paralympians for 2016 Rio

September 07, 16:16 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Azerbaijan was allocated three of the available licenses
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© AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis

MOSCOW, September 7. /TASS/. The Azerbaijani Paralympic team refused to accept three vacant quotas for 2016 Rio Games, which emerged after the entire Russian team had been barred from the much-anticipated event for Para-athletes, the press service of the Azerbaijani Sports Ministry told TASS on Wednesday.

After barring the Russian team from the 2016 Rio Games, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) distributed 267 quotas, earlier won by Russian Paralympians, among other international sports federations and Azerbaijan was allocated three of the available licenses.

"We have refused three licenses allocated for us," the press service said. "Only those [Azerbaijani] Paralympians, who personally won the quotas are traveling to the Paralympic Games."

On August 7, the IPC decided to bar the whole Russian Paralympic team from taking part in the 2016 Summer Paralympics. The ruling came on the heels of a report delivered earlier in the summer by the Independent Commission of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

The commission, led by Canadian sports law professor Richard McLaren, claimed in particular that a total of 35 doping samples were concealed in the Russian Paralympic sports between 2012 and 2015. However, it turned out later that not all the stated cases of concealed doping samples concerned the Russian Paralympic Committee. Nevertheless, the IPC decided on collectively punishing the Russian national team.

The RPC filed a lawsuit with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on August 15 in Lausanne against the IPC’s decision, but eight days later, the Swiss-based court ruled to uphold the ban slapped on the whole Russian Paralympic squad.

Last Friday, the RPC submitted a motion with the Supreme Federal Court of Switzerland appealing the decision made earlier by the CAS.

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