Toronto, August 28, 2016- Russian-speaking community of Canada held a mass rally in support of the Russian Paralympics team suspended from participation in the Games in Rio de Janeiro. Montreal and Winnipeg will join Toronto and Vancouver next week.
Here in Canada, we feel a special responsibility for the unfair report produced by the World Anti-Doping Agency, which essentially deprived the 267 Paralympic athletes from Russia of presumption of innocence. The decision on non-admission of the Russians to the Paralympic games in Rio was made on August 7th 2016 on the basis of the report by an independent commission under the leadership of WADA produced by a Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren. The head of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach after the announcement of the same report decided not to disqualify the whole team Russia from the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
The participants of the rally expressed their disagreement towards WADA decision to blanket ban the entire Russian paralympic team: “Sport out of politics!, “Shame on WADA!”, “Let Russian Paralympic athletes to compete!”, “No collective punishment of the Paralympians!”