MOSCOW, February 4. /TASS/. A volunteer appointed by the the 2018 Olympics organizing committee will carry an Olympic Flag under which the team of Olympic Athletes from Russia (OAR) will march at the opening ceremony of the Games in South Korea’s PyeongChang, Stanislav Pozdnyakov, the leader of Russian Olympic athletes, told TASS on Sunday.
"The Olympic flag the team of Olympic athletes from Russia will use at the opening ceremony will be carried by a volunteer appointed by the Games’ organizing committee," he said.
On December 5, the IOC Executive Board announced its decision to suspend the entire Russian national team from taking part in the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in South Korea’s PyeongChang over multiple doping abuse allegations.
The International Olympic Committee, however, stated that doping-free athletes from Russia might go to the 2018 Olympic Games under the classification of neutral athletes, or the OAR status, which stands for ‘Olympic Athlete from Russia.’ Currently, Russia’s delegation to the Games includes 168 athletes.
The upcoming 23rd Winter Olympic Games, will take place in South Korea’s PyeongChang on February 9-25, 2018.
Russian athletes competed at Olympic Games under the Olympic flag twice: at the Summer Games in Barcelona in 1992 and at the Winter Games in Albertville, also in 1992, or after the collapse of the former Soviet Union. The teams to those Games included athletes from former Soviet republics except for the three Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The flag bearers at those Games were team members: wrestler Alexander Karelin in Barcelona and biathlete Valery Medvedtsev in Albertville. This will be the first time when the flag bearer will not be an athlete.