Russian team banned from 2018 Paralympics

Russian team banned from 2018 Paralympics

Javier Howell
January 31, 2018

As the RPC remains suspended, Russian Para athletes will compete in the Winter Paralympic Games in South Korea's PyeongChang, due on March 9-19, as neutrals.

"We are a democratic organisation and anyone can express his or her opinion", Parsons said.

Parsons noted that there had been improvements in Russia's doping system, though not enough.

"On the other hand, this attitude to the people, who prove their right to take part in the Paralympic Games by their courage and will, is blasphemy and madness".

According to, FIS head Kasper had earlier said banning Russian athletes with clean doping records raised serious concerns and suggested a ban should be imposed only on proven dopers, as otherwise excluding Russian athletes is tantamount to labelling them as such. The IPC also requires the Russian anti-doping agency to be fully reinstated by WADA, which is also demanding Russia accepts the investigations' findings.

Nonetheless, those officials said, certain disabled Russian athletes will have the opportunity to compete at the coming Winter Games - a decision taken with some disagreement among top Paralympics executives, who were unanimous in their decision not to lift the ban.

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The Canadian Paralympic Committee and Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport supported the IPC's decision.

Eligible Para athletes from Russian Federation will be allowed to compete in Alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, snowboard and wheelchair curling at the Winter Paralympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, on March 9-18, the IPC said at a meeting in the western German city of Bonn. "It's an operational matter that will be dealt with the organising committee".

The IOC has said Russian athletes could march under their own flag at the Closing Ceremony if they adhere to the criteria required for the suspension of the Russian Olympic Committee to be lifted.

Unlike their Olympic counterparts, Paralympic officials had not previously allowed Russian athletes to bypass the ban and compete as individuals outside of qualifying events this fall.

The IPC revealed this after its Governing Board discussed the North's participation in the Games. "We have also witnessed behavioral and cultural changes".

"We are working closely with WADA, along with other relevant organisations and authorities, to ensure that all necessary steps are taken around anti-doping and fair play".