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BC-ATH--IAAF-Russia

February 21, 2019
The IAAF has allowed 21 more Russians, including an Olympic silver medalist, to compete as neutrals in a sign its relaxing restrictions on the doping-tainted Russian team. Yelena Sokolova, the 2012 Olympic silver medalist in long jump, and the former European championship medalist Irina Gumenyuk are among those granted the right to compete internationally for the first time since Russia’s team was suspended in 2015.

MOSCOW (AP) — The IAAF has allowed 21 more Russians, including an Olympic silver medalist, to compete as neutrals.

Yelena Sokolova, the 2012 Olympic silver medalist in long jump, can compete internationally for the first time since Russia’s team was banned in 2015 over widespread doping.

Triple jumper Irina Gumenyuk has her approval extended from last season.

To get neutral status, Russian athletes have had to show they’re clean by providing information about their drug-testing history to an IAAF panel. Thursday’s approvals are the first granted since the World Anti-Doping Agency started analyzing data from the Moscow laboratory last month.

A total 64 Russians have neutral status for 2019. Seventy-three Russians had the status at some stage last season, according to Russian officials.

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