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    REUTERS LONDON Martyn Herman Mar 9, 2016 12:30pm EST
    Russia running out of time for Rio, says Pound

    Athletics superpower Russia is running out of time to eradicate doping and may not be able to send a track and field team to this year's Rio Olympics, Dick Pound, chair of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) independent commission, said on Wednesday.

    "There seems to be some evidence that they're just changing deck chairs on the Titanic," he told an anti-doping conference.

    Russian athletes were banned from international competition after a report by Pound's commission revealing widespread doping and graft with involvement of Russian and international athletics officials. Russian athletics authorities were ordered to carry out sweeping reforms to allow a lifting of the ban.

    "My guess is Russia may not make it back for Rio. The IAAF and WADA are not going to risk their reputations by rolling over and playing dead," Pound said referring to the sport's world governing International Association of Athletics Federations.

    Last week a German TV documentary contained fresh allegations of malpractice in Russia's anti-doping system.

    Amongst the claims in Sunday's ARD program were that Russian coaches suspended in the worst corruption and doping scandal to hit the sport were still working in athletics, while others continued to provide banned substances to athletes.

    "We said to them at the time if you stop complaining about the (WADA) report you have a chance. Whether their progress is sufficient enough? I don't think they are devoting all their time and energy into getting where they ought to be.

    "We knew it would be a stretch for them but if they devoted themselves, heart and soul, to getting it done, it would be possible. Yet here we are four months later and I think somehow they must have convinced themselves that it would go away.

    "Clearly it's not going to go away. Neither WADA nor the IAAF are going to buy a band-aid solution," he told Reuters.

    The ARD reports in recent months on doping in Russian sport were based on information provided by whistleblowers Vitaly Stepanov, who formerly worked for Russia's anti-doping agency, and his wife Yuliya, an 800 meters runner banned for doping.


    WADA chairman Craig Reedie, who also addressed delegates, said he had appealed to the IAAF and the International Olympic Committee to allow Yuliya to compete at the Rio Olympics.

    Reedie said that contrary to media reports, WADA had also offered financial support and relocation to the Stepanovs who currently live in an undisclosed location outside Russia.

    "For the record, I, WADA and the anti-doping community are very grateful," Reedie said.

    Branded as traitors at home, Vitaly, Yuliya and their young son have been in hiding since the documentary aired in December 2014. They have changed residences nine times and are living under assumed names.

    "Without them it would have been a case of 'Niet, not possible, it's lies'. They gave us hard evidence," Pound said.

    Russia, second to the U.S. in the sport's pecking order, will be allowed to return to competition, including August's Rio Olympics, when it proves to WADA and the IAAF that it has met a series of conditions regarding its anti-doping operation.

    The doping and corruption scandal is amongst the worst in athletics' history and has put in question lucrative global sponsorship deals as well as results and medal awards in past international competitions.

    Reedie said governments and sports governing bodies, had to invest more to ensure their sports were clean.

    "Here we are in sport awash with money, but I'm very perplexed there isn't more cash for anti-doping," he said. Athletics-Russia running out of time for Rio, says Pound | Reuters

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  • #2
    RADIO FREE EUROPE March 14, 2016
    Coe Says It's Too Early To Reinstate Russia Into IAAF

    The president of world athletics' governing body says Russia should not be reinstated at this time.

    Sebastian Coe, president of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), said at a meeting of the body in Monaco on March 11 that it needs more time to investigate Russian antidoping progress.

    Coe said the IAAF will hold another council meeting in May to make a final decision on whether Russia will be readmitted in time for the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in August.

    Speaking shortly after Coe's statement, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said in Moscow that Russia has done enough to meet the IAAF's terms. He said Russia is prepared to do anything to be reinstated by the IAAF but that the conditions are unclear.

    Mutko also said that the problem with doping in the sports world is global and that it should not be "manipulated" for political means.

    He also said that Russian athletes will be unable to compete in the 2016 Rio Olympics if a ban on their participation is not lifted by mid-July.

    "If we are talking about the point of no return, it is after July 20 when the Russian Olympic Committee should confirm its team," Mutko said.

    The IAAF suspended Russia in November after an independent report detailed systematic corruption and doping cover-ups in the country. It laid down a series of criteria for the Russians to meet before they can be eligible for readmission.

    Last week, a documentary on the German TV channel ARD said Russia had made little progress on reform, that coaches banned for doping were still operating in the country, and officials newly installed as part of the clean-up were tipping off athletes ahead of drugs tests.

    Coe on March 11 also identified five countries he said need to pay urgent attention to the state of their drug-testing systems.

    He said Ukraine, Belarus, and Kenya "need to get compliant by the end of the year."

    He also said that Ethiopia and Morocco need a robust testing program put into place.

    The countries face no immediate sanctions and none of them is in any immediate danger of being banned from athletics or missing the Olympics, Coe said. Coe Says It's Too Early To Reinstate Russia Into IAAF

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    • #3
      UKRAINE TODAY: Ukraine flag raised in Rio's Olympic village, which will host the summer games on August 5-21.
      Aug. 1, 2016

      Summer Games to start on August 5

      On August 1, the ceremony of raising the Ukrainian flag took place in Rio's Olympic village (Brazil), which will host the summer games on August 5-21.

      The country's national anthem was sung in honour of the Ukrainian national blue-and-yellow team, Ukraine's National Olympic Committee (NOC) reports.

      The ceremony featured and well-known sportsmen including former Olympic champion (Ukrainian pole-vaulting legend) Serhiy Bubka, former Olympic champion Valeriy Borzov (Ukrainian sprint athlete), and Ukraine's Ambassador to Brazil Rostyslav Tronenko.

      Rio's Olympic Village mayor officially greeted the Olympic participants.

      The Olympic Village opening ceremony took place on 24 July in Rio de Janeiro, two weeks prior to 2016 Summer Olympics.


      News from Ukraine: Ukraine flag raised in Rio's Olympic village (video)

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      • #4
        IOC allows Russian athletes to participate in Olympics in Rio de Janeiro
        UKRAINE TODAY Jul 25, 2016

        World-Anti-Doping Agency strongly disappointed with IOC decision

        Russian athletes will participate in the upcoming Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

        The International Olympic Committee cancelled the ban previously imposed on the whole Russian team in view of doping abuse. Those allowed to perform in Brazil are set to be under severe anti-doping control.

        The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) already expressed its discontent of the decision, since it annuls the whole bulk of investigation provided. The results unveiled a complicated network of pharmaceutical banned technologies used by Russians to achieve the desired goals. According to WADA, both Russian government and the Federal Security Service (FSB) shielded the process.

        Those having unveiled Russia's forbidden deeds are now to conceal themselves. Yuliya Stepanova - a former Russian runner - has been disqualified for two years because of doping abuse. However, she told the German media the detailed scheme of how Russian sportsmen used banned substances and replace the doping probes afterwards.

        The ex-head of Russian anti-doping laboratory Grygoriy Rodchenkov had to emigrate from Russia after having confessed in the criminal deeds. As he had said before, 15 Russians cheated to win the medals during the Winter Olympics 2014 in Russian city of Sochi.

        Then came meldonium. Since January 2016 the World-Anti-Doping Agency listed the substance as banned for usage while competitions, since it is considered as an athletic performance enhancer. Numerous sportsmen have been punished so far, among them the world stars.

        Mariya Sharapova, Russian tennis player: "I received the letter from International Tennis Federation. They say I've failed to pass the doping test during the Australian Open Show. I really did, no one else responsible for my failure."

        Sharapova has appealed to the court to revise the verdict of the Anti-doping commission, though she will miss the Olympics in Brazil anyway. Thirty more sportsmen are reported to have been detected banned meldonium.

        Although the whole Russia's team was allowed to participate in the Olympics, the International Olympic Committee banned everyone previously blamed on doping of participating in the upcoming Olympic Games. News from Russia: IOC allows Russian athletes to participate in Olympics in Rio de Janeiro

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        • #5
          UKRAINe TODAY Jul. 30, 2016
          Russian weightlifters banned from Rio Olympics

          International Weightlifting Federation said the use of doping by Russian sportsmen damaged reputation of the athletic discipline

          The International Weightlifting Federation has decided to ban the athletes of the Russian Weightlifting Federation from participating at Rio Olympic Games 2016.

          Explaining its decision, the IWF said in a statement the doping statistics regarding the Russian weightlifters turned out to be "extremely shocking and disappointing"

          "The integrity of the weightlifting sport has been seriously damaged on multiple times and levels by the Russians, therefore an appropriate sanction was applied in order to preserve the status of the sport," the statement said.

          Eight athletes were nominated by the Russian Olympic Committee to compete in the Rio Olympic Games weightlifting events.
          Russia Doping Scandal: Russian weightlifters banned from Rio Olympics

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          • #6
            IOC: Russian athletes will have go through a three step procedure to participate in Olympics
            UAWIRE ORG August 1, 2016 4:05:49 PM

            Russian athletes will have to go through three filters in order to secure their participation in the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, the President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach said on July 31st, as reported by R-sport agency.

            “During the telephone conference, the IOC Executive Board established a three-step procedure for Russian athletes in the Games in Rio. First, there is the filter of the international federations, who consider their tests and make individual analyses,” he said. “The second filter is that the Russian Olympic Committee is not allowed to enter any athlete that has been sanctioned for doping. Then the third filter, the final decision, is based on the advice of an independent expert panel appointed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.” Bach further specified that they were “now at the third stage, where the Executive board yesterday decided to delegate its power to a panel of three members, members of EB led by the head of the IOC medical commission.”

            According to the IOC President, the Committee has done everything possible to avoid sanctioning truly clean athletes, which is why the IOC’s decision will be not harmful to the Olympic Games’ image. “I don't think that this will be damaging in the end because people will realize that we have to make this decision now,” Bach noted. “Imagine the situation if we hadn’t made any decision. What limbo that would be. And imagine the situation if we would gone another way later. What ridicule and legal limbo this would result in.”

            “Everyone would realize that it was not an easy decision to make and they would also realize that we did our best to address this situation in a way that allows us to protect all clean athletes worldwide,” Bach stressed. UAWire - IOC: Russian athletes will have go through a three step procedure to participate in Olympics

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            • #7
              Skeet shooting champion Mykola Milchev to carry Ukrainian flag during 2016 Summer Olympics
              UT UKRAINE TODAY Aug. 4, 2016

              In 2000 sportsman beat Olympic record shooting 100% of targets

              Ukrainian Olympic team has chosen its standard bearer.

              48-year-old shooter Mykola Milchev from Odesa will carry Ukrainian flag during the official opening ceremony in Rio-de-Janeiro.

              Last time he won the Olympics in Sydney in 2000 in skeet shooting. Milchev was the first one in history of Olympic games to hit all the 150 targets. The upcoming Summer Olympic Games are set to be the last in his professional career.

              Mykola Milchev, Ukraine's standard bearer at 2016 Summer Olympic Games: "The idea firstly appeared in 2012 during the Olympic Games in London. Personally I was not present there, so it was a surprise for me as well. There were other applicants too, but the team supported me in the end." : Skeet shooting champion Mykola Milchev to carry Ukrainian flag during 2016 Summer Olympics
              Last edited by Hannia; 5 August 2016, 16:29.

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              • #8
                UT UKRAINE TODAY Aug. 5, 2016
                2016 Rio Olympics Ukrainian schedule: August 6 (infographics)

                Never miss sporting events of Ukrainian Olympic team with our daily updated infographics

                The Olympic Games officially take place between 5 and 21 August, but they have actually already started with the women's football, followed by archery.

                Ukraine's Olympic team is among the 20 largest teams with 206 athletes. Eight of them are already Olympic champions.

                For August 6 Olympics day, Ukrainians will participate in the following competitions:

                Olympics Schedule of Events :

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                • #9
                  Protest mars Olympic torch Rio arrival ahead of ceremony – BBC The Olympic torch has arrived in Rio de Janeiro by boat after a three-month tour of Brazilian cities, according to the BBC.
                  BBC 04 August 2016

                  Chaotic scenes marred the arrival of the Olympic torch in Rio de Janeiro on Wednesday.

                  Hundreds of demonstrators angry at the high cost of hosting the Games protested and riot police used tar gas and pepper spray to disperse the crowd.

                  Images on news websites showed at least one policeman appearing to fire a projectile directly at a protester.

                  The Olympic torch arrived in Rio de Janeiro by boat after a three-month tour of Brazilian cities.

                  The mayor of Rio, Eduardo Paes, carried the torch on its first few laps through the city centre.

                  Rio: All you need to know
                  Rio 2016: Day-by-day guide
                  Promises kept and broken
                  Is Brazil ready for the Olympics?

                  But images taken later showed crowds of people including many families with children who had come out to watch the torch relay running away in fear from the police action.

                  The police told local media that a group of people refused to leave one lane of the road open for the torch as had been agreed earlier and blocked the street in one place.

                  hey said they had to intervene to contain the chaos and clear the road.

                  The BBC's Wyre Davies in Brazil says that this is exactly what Olympic organisers feared might happen after what has been a relatively peaceful and sometimes spectacular torch relay.

                  On Tuesday at least three protesters were arrested by the police in the town of Niteroi, across the bay from Rio during the torch relay there.

                  The police used pepper spray and part of the relay had to be abandoned.

                  Brazil is in the grip of a deep recession and political crisis, and further protests are expected ahead of the Olympic opening ceremony on Friday.

                  Organisers say more than a million tickets remain unsold.
                  Protest mars Olympic torch Rio arrival ahead of ceremony - BBC News

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                  • #10
                    U UKRAINE TODAY Aug. 6, 2016
                    Crimea 'was returned' to Ukraine at 2016 Summer Olympics opening ceremony

                    The show was broadcast by NBC, the US oldest major broadcast network

                    The TV chart showed the Crimean peninsula as part of Ukraine when the Olympic opening ceremony in Rio de Janeiro was aired.

                    The agency Flash Crimea published relevant screenshots.

                    When the Russian Olympic athletes marched into Rio de Janeiro's Maracana stadium, the TV screen showed a map of the Russian Federation without the occupied Black Sea peninsula.

                    When the Ukrainian national team entered the stadium, Ukraine map's was demonstrated on the screen with Crimea as the country's part.

                    Judging by the logo in the upper right corner of the screen, the opening ceremony was aired by the American television channel NBC, which has the rights to broadcast the Summer Games in the United States. : Crimea 'was returned' to Ukraine at 2016 Summer Olympics opening ceremony
                    Last edited by Hannia; 6 August 2016, 17:07.

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                    • #11
                      Reuters: Police detonate backpack near finish line of Rio Olympic cycling race A loud blast shook the media seats near the finishing line of the men's cycling road race on the first day of the Rio Olympics when Brazil's bomb squad detonated an unattended backpack on Saturday, amid tight security at South America's first Games, Reuters reported.
                      UNIAN Aug 6, 2016

                      A Reuters witness reported seeing bomb squad agents in protective clothing operating near the area where media were seated on the boulevard of Copacabana beach. That followed the detonation of another unattended bag near the same spot on Friday evening during the opening ceremony for the Games, according to the report.

                      A spokeswoman for the public security department said that officials believe the bag may have belonged to a homeless man, but protocol requires any unattended objects to be destroyed, Reuters wrote.

                      In recent days, bomb squad members have detonated several unattended bags in controlled explosions around Rio amid high security, the report said.

                      Brazil detained 12 people for suspected links to Islamic State last month but it has insisted that the risk of an attack at the Games is minimal. Brazil has deployed some 85,000 police and military to guard the Games, roughly twice the number at the 2012 London Olympics.

                      Reuters: Police detonate backpack near finish line of Rio Olympic cycling race

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                      • #12
                        UT UKRAINE TODAY Aug. 8, 2016
                        Ukraine has its first medal at Rio Olympics

                        Sergii Kulish wins silver in the Olympic men's 10-metre air rifle

                        Kulish, 23, shot 204.6 in the final round of his second Olympic appearance. The gold winner, Italy's Niccolo Campriani, finished with a score of 206.1. Russia's Vladimir Maslennikov took bronze on his Olympic debut with a score of 184.2.

                        One more Ukrainian shooter, Oleh Tsarkov, finished 8th.

                        With the silver medal, won by Sergii Kulish, Ukraine is 20th in the list of medal-winning countries. Overall there are 32 countries in this list. The first is the USA with 3 golds, 5 silvers, and 4 bronzes. The next are Italy, China, Australia and South Korea.

                        Ukraine has one more reason to celebrate today. Olha Kharlan reached the quarterfinals in fencing (sabre).
                        : Ukraine has its first medal at Rio Olympics

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                        • #13
                          UT UKRAINE TODAY Aug. 8, 2016
                          Meanness and inhumanity - Russian Foreign Affairs press-office comments on IPC ban

                          Russia protests against ban for its Paralympic team because of doping allegations

                          Maria Zakharova, the press officer of Ministry of Foreign Relations, has written in a Facebook post that the decision of International Paralympic Committee "shocks with meanness and inhumanity". "This is a treachery of the highest human rights standards that form the basis of the modern world", added Zakharova.

                          Russian national federation of sport for disabled people has already appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. On Monday, August 8, Russian Paralympic Committee president Vladimir Lukin said the committee is ready to prove that Russian team fulfilled all its anti-doping obligations. He called the ban a grave human rights abuse.

                          At a news conference in Moscow Lukin insisted that most Russian Paralympians were clean of doping, as well as other Russian athletes, banned from Rio.

                          On Sunday, August 7, President of International Paralympic Committee Philip Craven said that Russia's Paralympians were part of a broken system overseen by the Russian government. The team was suspended ahead of the Games, taking part on September 7 - 18. : Meanness and inhumanity - Russian Foreign Affairs press-office comments on IPC ban

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                          • #14
                            RADIO FREE EUROPE August 10, 2016
                            Four-Time Olympic Tennis Champion Williams Defeated By Ukrainian Player

                            Defending OIympic tennis champion Serena Williams was eliminated from the Rio Games by a shocking loss to Ukrainian player Elina Svitolina.

                            The defeat of the reigning world champion in a 6-4 qualifying match on August 9 prevents her from securing a fifth Olympic gold medal.

                            Svitolina, 21, will face two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova for a place in the semi-finals.

                            Williams was hampered by multiple errors and a shoulder injury, at one point, screaming in pain.

                            "Obviously I am very disappointed. The better player won but I can't wait for next time," Williams, 34, said afterwards.

                            "It's unreal. It's just the perfect moment," said Svitolina, who is ranked 20th in women's tennis.

                            "I didn't expect that I could win and I said don't think she will make a mistake," she said. "I tried not to think about playing Serena, the Olympic champion and so many Grand Slams."

                            Williams' defeat followed an equally shocking first-round loss for men's world number one Novak Djokovic of Serbia. Four-Time Olympic Tennis Champion Williams Defeated By Ukrainian Player

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                            • #15
                              Russian state TV says Michael Phelps’ use of ‘cupping’ ain’t so different from illegal doping
                              MEDUZA TJournal 09:29, 9 august 2016

                              The state-owned Russian television network Rossiya-24 has aired a news report comparing American swimmer Michael Phelps' use of an ancient Chinese therapy called “cupping” to illegal doping. In the TV broadcast, the Rossiya-24 anchor tells viewers that Phelps “in many respects owes his achievements to vacuum massage, which is how this therapy is described scientifically.”

                              The Russian news report compares cupping to meldonium, the banned performance-enhancing substance used widely by Russian athletes that led to the suspension of much of Russia's Olympic team. According to the Rossiya-24 report, vacuum therapy improves blood flow, thereby allowing muscles to recover faster after physical exercise. “Meaning that the effects of such procedures are in many ways similar to the actions of meldonium,” the Russian network explains.


                              Medical experts in the West widely question the benefits of cupping, dismissing it as a generally useless homeopathic treatment.

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