Russian President Putin skips Rio Olympics' opening ceremony

Russian President Vladimir Putin does not plan to attend the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, his spokesman said Thursday.

"The president does not have such a trip on his schedule," spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in comments carried by state news agency TASS.

The Kremlin chief of staff Sergei Ivanov is also not expected to attend Friday's ceremony, Peskov said. It remains unclear whether Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko will go or if Putin intends to visit Rio during the course of the August 5-21 Games.

Dozens of Russian athletes have been banned from the Games amid doping allegations. Russia has protested that the bans affect athletes who are apparently clean, such as pole vaulting favourite Yelena Isinbayeva.

Russia had faced a complete ban from the Games, but the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced last month that the decision to ban athletes would be up to their particular sport's associations.

Russian media speculated at the time that Russia was spared because of Putin's reputed friendship with IOC president Thomas Bach.

Last update: Sun, 21/08/2016 - 12:38
Author: 

More from Sport

Balotelli rails against alleged racist insults from Bastia fans

Italian football star Mario Balotelli has reacted on social media after claiming to be racially abused by Bastia...

New revelations expected on Russian doping in documentary

New revelations on doping practices in Russia were expected later Friday when a documentary on the subject was to be...

Manchester United end Real Madrid's reign atop Football Money List

Manchester United generated the highest revenue of any football club in history last season, according to...

Petition starts in Budapest with aim for referendum against Olympics

A petition against Budapest's bid for the 2024 Olympics started on Thursday, with the aim of having a referendum on...

Sevilla beat Real Madrid to end their 40-game unbeaten run

Sevilla ended Real Madrid’s 40-game unbeaten run on Sunday in Spain’s top division with a 2-1 victory.