Russia still ‘preferred host’ for 2019 European Games

Baku, January 22, AZERTAC

Russia remains the preferred choice to host the 2019 European Games despite the country’s current suspension from global track and field because of a doping scandal, according to Associated Press.

The European Olympic Committees said Friday that Russia is still “the preferred host providing they can demonstrate their ability to support an anti-doping program of the highest international standards.”

The European body said it would continue to consult with the IOC, World Anti-Doping Agency and others to assess Russia’s compliance with global anti-doping rules. Russia’s athletics federation was suspended in November after a WADA panel alleged state-sponsored doping and cover-ups in the country.

The inaugural European Games were held last year in Baku, Azerbaijan.

The Russian cities of Sochi and Kazan have been proposed as joint hosts of the 2019 event.

The Netherland had been chosen to host the games in 2019 but pulled out last year over financial concerns.

The EOC hopes to have a decision on a new host by May.

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