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Russia To Learn Whether Its Athletes Can Compete In Rio


Russia is set to learn whether its suspension from international athletics competitions because of widespread doping will be lifted in time to take part in the Rio Olympics in August.

The International Association of Athletics Federations in Vienna will vote on June 17 on the Russian ban, in what should be a decisive ruling, although the International Olympic Committee has said it could overrule the federation to prevent innocent athletes from being punished along with guilty ones.

The federation suspended Russia from all track-and-field events in November after a report from the World Anti-Doping Agency revealed widespread, state-sponsored doping.

A task force has been studying how much reform Russia has made, but Moscow's hopes of winning over doubters were probably dashed on June 15 when the anti-doping agency released another report saying Russian athletes have continued to fail drug tests in large numbers and obstruct officials seeking to test them.

In its bid to overturn the ban, Russia has announced a raft of reforms, including changing top officials and introducing compulsory anti-doping classes in schools to reform attitudes toward the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP
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