Sports federation takes unlikely step with Russia

The decision goes against the trend of sweeping suspensions for Russian athletes

The Russian Luge Federation (FSSR) has managed to retain its membership with the International Luge Federation amid sanctions being lifted against Russian athletes previously barred from international events as a response to their country's military operation in Ukraine.

The FSSR managed to successfully appeal against the ruling initially made on an International Olympic Committee (IOC) recommendation.

FSSR president Natalia Gart confirmed the development to TASS, though she did note that she had been expelled from the FIL's executive committee.

"The Russian Luge Federation has retained its membership in the international federation," Gart said.

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"There were not enough votes for expulsion, it was necessary [to get] two-thirds for this, but in the end they scored less than half. Therefore we reserve all rights, our athletes can compete at international competitions, and Russia can host international competitions," she added.

"But I was expelled by a simple majority from the members of the FIL executive committee, and Albert Demchenko, Alexander Shakhnazarov and Gennady Rodionov were expelled from the working bodies of the international federation.

"We will certainly file a claim with the FIL Court of Appeal," vowed Gart, who has elsewhere threatened to sue according to Match TV.

"But in general, I think we have achieved the [best] result. The Luge Federation of Russia has been fully restored in its rights," Gart concluded.

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