Russian athletes defy order to return medals
MOSCOW: The silver medals sprinter Tatyana Firova won at the Beijing and London Olympics are stored in a safe in her apartment near Moscow in defiance of the International Olympic Committee, which has wanted them back for months.
Firova is one of six athletes who said they had yet to return Olympic medals and diplomas from the Beijing and London Games. Two of these athletes said they had no intention of returning them, while three others said they would do so but were unclear how to proceed, had logistical constraints or were awaiting the outcome of an appeal. Another athlete was undecided.
“I don’t want to return my medals because I think no one would have deserved them more,” said Firova, who was stripped of her Beijing silver medal in the 4x400m relay after banned substances, including the anabolic steroid turinabol, were found in her samples.
Russia’s athletics federation said three stripped Olympic medals and one diploma had been returned, and that several appeals were still being heard. – Reuters