Russia's Putin: I never demanded victory at Sochi Olympics

Robots developed by the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology will help provide spectators and athletes with information and help during Pyeongchang 2018

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) did not impose a blanket ban on Russian Federation ahead of the Rio 2016 Summer Games but said on Tuesday that the evidence unearthed by the Schmid Commission made the doping situation impossible to dispute.

Without identifying Rodchenkov by name, Putin said the IOC's decision had been "mainly based on the testimonies of a person whose moral and ethical attitudes and psychological state raise many questions".

Any Russian athlete who does compete in Pyeongchang must do so as an "Olympic Athlete from Russia" (OAR), in uniforms which bear that acronym.

The decision of the International Olympic Committee to bar the Russian national team from taking part in the 2018 Olympic Games is "controversial", said Russian Sports Minister Pavel Kolobkov on Tuesday.

However Putin said yesterday: "We will definitely not be announcing any sort of blockades and will not be impeding the participation of our athletes if any of them made a decision to take part in the Olympics under the neutral status". The South Korean-born skating legend, is an eight-time gold medalist who obtained Russian citizenship in 2011, after a public falling out with South Korea's skating union.

A star athlete and a medal hopeful in the winter games, An said he can't give up on his Olympic dreams adding he has been preparing for the event for four years.

Speaking to reporters after a speech to automobile plant workers in Nizhny Novgorod where he announced he would run for a fourth presidential term next year, Putin said the International Olympic Committee decision was politically motivated. By the time the report came out, almost all Russian track and field athletes had been banned by the International Association of Athletics Federations.

Haley said US officials will monitor activity in the region closely, and determine a way to ensure athletes are protected.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport said Wednesday it had received appeals from 22 Russian athletes over the bans, and that they asked for the CAS to rule before the Pyeongchang games begin.

"What matters is that the commission wrote in its conclusions that there was no system of state support of doping in Russian Federation".

She said the IOC choice of "Olympic Athletes from Russia" as the official designation, instead of a more neutral tag, decided the issue for her.

The games will not be broadcast in the country because of the absence of a Russian national team. "Will Russia be at the Olympics but without a flag?" No other country in the world - save, perhaps, Norway - puts as much stake in the Winter Olympics as the Russians do.

His words didn't prevent Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova from saying Wednesday that the punishment of Russia's Olympic program was an attempt to isolate and weaken Russia, saying its critics had resorted to "Plan B", after the country hosted the Sochi Olympics.

Whether or not they compete under their own flag, ski jumping and Nordic combined seem unlikely to result in any medals for Russians.

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