Russian athletes not allowed to wear medals at Olympic Sports House

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PyeongChang (South Korea), Feb 16 (IANS) Russian athletes are not allowed to wear Olympic medals when they visit the Sports House opened in Gangneung coastal cluster for the fans of Russian Olympic athletes, the executive director of the Russian Olympians Support Foundation told reporters.

The Sports House was inaugurated on February 9. The Russian federations of winter sports contributed their artefacts, photos and other materials, reports Tass news agency.

The visitors of the Sports House have a possibility to meet with Olympic veterans and watch videos from the Olympic Games in South Korea’s PyeongChang.

“We are not violating anything, we are not putting up any symbols. We have no alternative ceremonies here. We were told — you must invite athletes, but the fans are not allowed to put medals on them even by way of a joke, as this will be seen as an alternative award ceremony,” said Alexander Katushev, one of the organisers of the Sports House.

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“Athletes come here, and very often. Recently we saw pair figure skaters here — like any other Russian fan or athlete they have the right to come here.

“There won’t be any honouring of athletes here, but nobody forbids the fans to cheer the athlete if they see him or her. Because this is a normal reaction,” he went on to say.

According to Katushev, representatives of the International Olympic Committee have visited the Sports House.

“Two people came, an American and an Englishman, — they toured all houses, but came to us with a special kind of feelings. After the conversation, as you can see, the House keeps working, fans keep coming here.

“IOC representatives put forward absolutely no claims, they said the House should keep on working, there were just certain aspects they wanted to discuss. We saw no claims after their visit,” Katushev added.

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–IANS

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