Putin to athletes: Ignore doping scandals at Olympics

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Putin to athletes: Ignore doping scandals at Olympics
Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks to his supporters during a meeting for his campaign in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018. Putin said on Tuesday the Trump administration made a "hostile step" when it published a list of Russian businessmen and politicians as part of a sanctions law against Moscow. (Alexei Nikolsky, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin has told the country’s athletes to forget about doping scandals when they compete at the Pyeongchang Olympics.

As punishment for what it deemed a doping scheme during the 2014 Sochi Olympics, the International Olympic Committee has invited 169 Russians to compete under a neutral flag using the name “Olympic Athletes from Russia.”

At a meeting with athletes at his presidential residence outside Moscow, Putin says “I wish you not to think about anything which has recently accompanied your preparation for these Olympics.”

He adds that he hopes they “focus on sporting competition, and that you know that following you, as usual, are hundreds of thousands, millions, of fans who love you and hope you win.”