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Glorious Paralympic athletes from Russia return home from PyeongChang

Russia’s so-called "neutral" team of Para athletes brought home from PyeongChang a total of 24 medals

MOSCOW, March 19. /TASS/. A team of Para athletes from Russia arrived in Moscow on Monday from South Korea after their successful performance at the 2018 Winter Paralympic Games in PyeongChang.

The plane carrying Russian Para athletes along with members of the national delegation landed on schedule at the Sheremetyevo Airport in Moscow late on Monday afternoon.

Besides a hundred of sports fans gathered in the waiting area, Paralympians from Russia were also greeted at the airport by officials from the Russian Sports Ministry, the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) and lawmakers from the Russian parliament’s lower house, the State Duma, as well as by their friends and relatives.

People at the airport in Moscow were holding flavor bouquets and waved the flags of Russia singing the national anthem as the athletes appeared from the gates upon their arrival.

Para athletes from Russia participated in the 2018 Paralympics in the neutral status, dubbed as the Neutral Paralympic Athletes (NPA), as the membership of the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) with the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) is currently suspended.

A total of 30 Russian Para athletes and six sighted guides, who helped the visually impaired athletes, took part in the 2018 Winter Paralympic Games, hosted by PyeongChang between March 9 and 18.

Russia’s so-called ‘neutral’ team of Para athletes brought home from PyeongChang a total of 24 medals, namely eight gold, 10 silver and six bronze, ranking second in the overall medal count of the 2018 PyeongChang Paralympics, after the United States.

The Paralympians from the United States won a total of 36 medals (13 gold, 15 silver and eight bronze) to finish in the top of the overall medals standings. The US team at the 2018 Winter Paralympic Games in PyeongChang consisted of 74 athletes.

President of the Russian Paralympic Committee Vladimir Lukin told journalists that Andrew Parsons, the president of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) was deeply impressed with the so-called "iron will and determination" of Para athletes from Russia at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Paralympics.

"It happened that our team (at the 2018 Paralympics) was not complete, but those competing there worked at double and triple possible capacities during the competitions showing excellent results," RPC President Lukin told journalists.

"The most important is that they had (the IPC) no claims whatsoever in regard to our team throughout the tournament," Lukin said. "Even (IPC President) Andrew Parsons said that he had been deeply impressed with the iron will and determination of our athletes."