The International Olympic Committee has backed a decision to ban Russian athletes from competing at the upcoming Rio Olympics over widespread doping. The International Association of Athletics Federations Council on Friday voted unanimously to strip Russian athletes of the right to compete in sporting events at the Olympics in August, denouncing Russia's "deep-seated culture" of doping. In a statement on Saturday, the IOC said it "fully respects" that decision, dashing any hopes that Russian President Vladimir Putin might have had for seeing his countrymen compete. On Friday, in response to the IAAF ban, Putin had said he was hoping for an "appropriate response" from the IOC. With the ban in place, only a handful of Russian athletes are expected to be able to compete in track and field events, the first time the country will not be represented since the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles.
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