Report Says Olympic Subway Expansion Overbilled
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The Latest on the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro
A new report says the $3 billion subway expansion built as one of the main Olympic legacy projects in Rio de Janeiro was overbilled by 25 percent.
Rio de Janeiro state auditors say contracts show discrepancies such as invoices with overpriced materials and inconsistencies in services hired by the state.
The information was reported by O Globo newspaper on Thursday, and an official at Rio state's court of auditors confirmed the findings but said the report was not public yet.
Federal police have been investigating whether the main builder in the subway consortium paid bribes to officials connected to the expansion.
After many delays, Brazil's highest officials celebrated the completion of the troubled subway line on Saturday, less than a week before the games officially open on Friday.
The international equestrian federation says all five Russians have been cleared to compete at the Olympics.
The federation, FEI, says the International Olympic Committee cleared the horses and eventing riders Aleksandr Markov, Andrey Mitin and Evgeniya Ovchinnikova, and dressage competitors Inessa Merkulova and Marina Aframeeva.
FEI President Ingmar De Vos says: "This has been a very difficult time for our Russian athletes, who all have clean anti-doping records under both human and equine testing regimes, so we are very happy to have confirmation today from the IOC that all five are now declared eligible to compete."
IOC President Thomas Bach says a final ruling on the entry of Russian athletes in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics will be announced later Thursday, just a day before the opening of the games.
The IOC asked international sports federations to decide which individual athletes could be free to compete in Rio after a review of their doping records.
The final decision is up to a three-person International Olympic Committee panel.
Bach says at a news conference that "we expect the final results of this panel to be ready for publication later today."
The world volleyball governing body says Russia's teams for volleyball and beach volleyball have been cleared to compete at the Olympics.
The International Federation of Volleyball said Thursday that the 30 Russian players had formally received the green light from the International Olympic Committee as expected. The men's volleyball team is the defending Olympic champion.
Last week, the federation said it was reviewing updated team lists from the Russian Volleyball Federation.
Earlier this year, the meldonium doping scandal extended to Russian volleyball. Outside hitter Alexander Markin tested positive for the substance in January. Markin was temporarily suspended while FIVB considered the case. It found that Markin "committed an anti-doping rule violation but bore no fault or negligence in this case" and reinstated him.
Juan Antonio Samaranch Jr. has been elected a vice president of the IOC, 42 years after his father reached the same spot.
The younger Samaranch was elected Thursday as first vice president of the International Olympic Committee, the position just below IOC President Thomas Bach.
Samaranch's father was elected vice president in 1974 and went on to become IOC president in 1980. He held the top job until 2001.
Turkey's Ugur Erdener was elected to another vice president's spot Thursday, while Ukraine's Sergei Bubka was among those winning terms on the executive board. U.S. member Angela Ruggiero joined the board in her new role as chair of the IOC athletes commission.
The IOC also elected eight new members: Nita Ambani (India), Sari Essayah (Finland), Ivo Ferriani (Italy), Luis Alberto Moreno (Colombia), Auvita Rapilla (Papua New Guinea), Anant Singh (South Africa), Tricia Smith (Canada) and Karl Stoss (Austria).
Russian golfer Maria Verchenova has been cleared to compete at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
The International Golf Federation says "the IOC has notified the IGF and Russian Olympic Committee that Ms. Maria Verchenova's entry to the women's individual golf event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games has been confirmed."
Golf is back in the Olympics for the first time since 1904.
The International Judo Federation has cleared all 11 Russian judo athletes to compete at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
The federation said Thursday that four women and seven men were tested "many times" before the Olympics and are clean.
The women are Irina Dolgova, Natalia Kuziutina, Ekaterina Valkova and Ksenia Chibisova. The men are Beslan Mudranov, Mikhail Puliaev, Denis Iartcev, Khasan Khalmurzaev, Kirill Denisov, Tagir Khaibulaev and Renat Saidov.
Organizers of the Winter Olympics in 2022 in Beijing are promising that everything is already on track for the country's second Olympics, building on experience from the Summer Games in 2008.
Pan Zhiwei, director of international relations, says the games will attract 300 million more Chinese to participate in winter sports.
Pan says: "We know that we have a long way to go to be a strong nation in winter sports. An important reason for us to bid for the Olympic Winter Games is our desire to popularize and develop winter sports through hosting the games."
Pan made a quick, passing reference to environmental concerns surrounding these Olympics, including the need for artificial snow production.
He says "we are deeply aware that compared to the Summer Games, holding the Winter Games will present many challenges such as natural conditions."
The International Boxing Association says all 11 of Russia's boxers who qualified for the Rio Games have been cleared to participate following a doping review for all Russian athletes.
AIBA said in a statement Thursday that it recommended each boxer be allowed to fight following the reviews, and got confirmation of that assessment from an IOC review panel.
The IOC responded to the Russian doping scandal by placing the burden on international sports federations to determine whether Russian athletes should be allowed to compete in Rio.
More than 250 have been declared eligible by federations so far, with more decisions expected Thursday on the eve of the opening ceremony. More than 100 Russian athletes, including the track and field team, have been excluded.
French President Francois Hollande is wasting no time pushing his country as a potential 2024 Olympics host, making an on-site bid in Rio de Janeiro.
Hollande flew to Rio on Thursday for a series of meetings over two days, including a dinner with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach and delegation chiefs of countries taking part in the Olympics and Paralympics. They were holding private talks Friday.
Paris lost the 2012 Games to London in a surprise for the French, who felt certain Paris would be selected.
Hollande will present the French candidacy for 2024 to the press on Friday, meet with French athletes and attend gala events, leaving after the opening ceremony Friday night.