IAAF upholds suspension, Russia to miss Olympic athletics in Rio

News started trickling in on Friday morning that the International Association of Athletics Federations had upheld Russia’s ban from track and field that will carry through to the Olympic Games this summer.

At approximately 12:15 p.m. ET, IAAF confirmed Russia’s exclusion from athletics at Rio 2016 through its president Sebastian Coe.

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“Although good progress has been made, the IAAF Council was unanimous that (Russia) had not met the reinstatement conditions and that Russian athletes could not credibly return to international competition without undermining the confidence of their competitors and the public,” Coe said on Friday.

IAAF Council had suspended Russia from taking part in global athletics events on November 13, 2015 over widespread state-sponsored doping. Following the suspension a taskforce was created to visit Russia and examine whether its athletics federation was making progress in combating performance enhancing drug use among its athletes.

Friday’s decision made in Vienna, Austria was a verdict on IAAF’s belief in Russia’s inability to rout doping from its athletics program, forcing an unprecedented decision to exclude the country from taking part in Olympic track and field at Rio 2016.

Some Russians could however, compete in Rio for athletics if shown to make an “extraordinary contribution to the fight against doping,” an IAAF release stated.