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Russian athletes will convene on December 12 to discuss the International Olympic Committee's ‘neutral flag’ offer

Athletes who’d planned on representing Russia at the 2018 Winter Olympics will attend a meeting on Tuesday, December 12, to discuss the International Olympic Committee’s decision to ban the Russian national team and its offer extended to “clean athletes” to participate under a “neutral flag” and anthem.

Mikhail Degtyarev, the head of the State Duma’s committee on physical culture and sports, announced the meeting on Russian network television, following the IOC’s ruling. Degtyarev said the IOC’s decision is intended to divide Russian society as retribution for “the most perfect Olympics in history,” referring to the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi.

On December 5, the IOC’s Executive Board suspended the Russian Olympic Committee for “the systematic manipulation” of anti-doping rules, banning Russian athletes from competing in Pyeongchang under their national flag and anthem. Individual Russian athletes will be invited “under strict conditions” to participate under the name “Olympic Athlete from Russia,” though it's unclear if Russian athletes will agree to this treatment.

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