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IOC will let Russian athletes in the Rio Olympics, but with restrictions

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The International Olympic Committee has decided not to ban Russia from the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in a mandate released by the organization.

Deciding to allow Russian athletes to participate was largely based on the lack of time ahead of the Olympics. The IOC finding indicates that the Olympics beginning in 12 days put urgency into the decision, and typical processes would not be able to be followed in a condensed timeline. However, there will be greater oversight of Russian athletes, saying that they cannot have "the 'presumption of innocence' " applied to them. This means more testing and closer scrutinization.

In addition, any athlete from Russia who has ever tested positive for performance enhancing drugs is banned from the 2016 Olympics, as well as any athlete mentioned in the 100 page report from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) last week.

The WADA report concluded that Russia was guilty of doping during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. The report detailed extensive doping and cover-ups by Russian officials, even going so far as to include the Federal Security Service, the successor to the KGB, in the impropriety.

Ultimately, more than 50 percent of positive tests were converted to negative through various means. A total of 643 positive tests were reviewed as part of an independent report, with at least 312 athletes having their results falsely reported as negative. A WADA-accredited lab in Moscow was found to be guilty in the scheme, willingly altering results as ordered by a Deputy Minister of Sport.

After the report was published, the IOC announced that it was opening disciplinary discussions for both Russian officials and athletes. They also announced they will not associate itself with any international competition held in Russia, including the 2019 Euro Games and would ask other sports federations not to hold major events in Russia.

A full-scale investigation of all Russian athletes who participated in the 2014 Games in Sochi was also launched, and the IOC also announced they would not accredit anybody implicated by the report or anyone from the Russian Ministry of Sport. The Moscow laboratory implicated in the report had its accreditation from WADA revoked in April 2016.

Russia finished atop the medal standings in the 2014 Winter Olympics with 33 total medals. The United States had 28 total medals.