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Sports official comments on FIS decision to clear Russia’s suspended skiers

November 23, 2017, 19:01 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Six Russian cross-country skiers earlier were suspended by the International Olympic Committee over doping abuse allegations

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MOSCOW, November 23. /TASS/. A decision made by the International Ski Federation (FIS) to temporarily clear Russia’s six suspended cross-country skiers for international tournaments was reasonable and expected , Elena Vyalbe, the president of the Russian Cross Country Ski Federation, told TASS on Thursday.

The FIS announced in its statement earlier in the day that six Russian cross-country skiers, suspended earlier by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) over doping abuse allegations, were cleared to take part in international competitions before the IOC Disciplinary Commission submits "reasoned decisions."

The athletes at the issue are Alexander Legkov, Evgeniy Belov, Julia Ivanova, Evgenia Shapovalova, Alexey Petukhov and Maxim Vylegzhanin.

"I have been expecting such decision from the FIS today in regard to our athletes," Vyalbe said in an interview with TASS adding that the FIS, just like the Russian Cross Country Ski Federation, was "waiting for the reasoned decisions on behalf of the Denis Oswald Commission and today’s statement (of FIS) was logical."

"The FIS employs very reasonable people, who are not putting the cart before the horse," she said. "The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) made a decision that the athletes’ suspension expires on October 31, so what else should we say in this regard."

The International Ski Federation announced earlier in the day that: "The FIS Doping Panel is obliged to wait until the IOC Disciplinary Commission reasoned decisions are submitted with details of the evidence relied on, before it can take further actions with the cases."

"As a consequence the active athletes are eligible to compete in FIS including World Cup competitions for the time being," the statement said.

The IOC Disciplinary Commission, chaired by Denis Oswald, recommended on November 9 to ban for life four Russian cross-country skiers as well as to cancel their results from the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi over doping abuse allegations. The four skiers at the issue were Maxim Vylegzhanin, Alexey Petukhov, Julia Ivanova and Evgenia Shapovalova.

On November 1, the IOC Disciplinary Commission also slapped life bans on two Russian cross-country skiers, Alexander Legkov and Evgeniy Belov, over doping abuse accusations and ruled to annul their results from the 2014 Sochi Olympics as well.


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