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IOC praises Vladimir Putin for allowing protests during Olympics

SportsVladimir PutinInternational Olympic Committee

The International Olympic Committee has praised Russian President Vladimir Putin for allowing protests during the 2014 Sochi Games.

A post on the Kremlin’s website over the weekend announced that demonstrators will be allowed to gather in one or more specific areas in Sochi from Jan. 7 through March 21. The Games are scheduled for Feb. 7-23. Though protesters must receive official permission to stage demonstrations, Olympic officials voiced confidence in the process.

“We welcome this announcement,” IOC President Thomas Bach told R-Sport in a statement. “It is in line with the assurances that President Putin gave us last year and part of the Russian authority’s plans to ensure free expression during the Games.”

No details have been provided on the proposed gathering areas, which could include various spots or routes in Sochi.

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