MOSCOW, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 20th july, 2016) - Russia's Olympic Committee pressed on Thursday with its preparations for the Rio Olympic Games despite the threat of a ban for state-run doping hanging over the country. At a regular meeting in Moscow the executive board approved a 387-strong team to compete at this summer's games starting on August 5. The team's line-up includes the 68 track and field athletes, whose fate hinges on the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne, which will rule Thursday on whether the IAAF had grounds to impose a blanket ban on Russia's athletics federation.
"The (Olympic) squad's line-up has been formed according to the applications of the country's sports federations," the committee chief Alexander Zhukov told the press. The Olympic Committee released a statement on their website saying that 387 competitors were included in the list. The preparations come despite a mammoth scandal that sees Russia under threat of a blanket Olympic ban following bombshell allegations of state-controlled cheating.
An independent WADA commission led by Canadian investigator Richard McLaren, which detailed an elaborate cheating scheme run by Russia's sports ministry with help from the FSB state intelligence agency. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said it would study "legal options" before deciding whether to ban Russia from the Rio Games following emergency talks on Tuesday. A spokesman for the committee said Wednesday it would decide "within seven days" on whether to ban Russia from the Rio Games over rampant state-run doping.
The IOC ordered a disciplinary commission to look into what McLaren commission Monday's report called a "state-dictated failsafe system" of drug cheating that included Russia's secret service swapping dirty urine samples for clean ones through a hole in a wall in Sochi. The IOC -- which faces a race against the clock to reach a final decision on Russians in Rio -- said it "will explore the legal options with regard to a collective ban of all Russian athletes for the Olympic Games 2016 versus the right to individual justice".