17 Nov 2017 18:15

VGTRK's intention not to air 2018 Games if Russia is barred from participating justified - Peskov

MOSCOW. Nov 17 (Interfax) - The Kremlin understands the intention of VGTRK not to air the 2018 Winter Olympic Games if Russia is barred from participating, presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

"This is not quite an issue for the Kremlin; the thing is that the airing of Olympic Games requires the acquisition of rather expensive rights. Of course, the money is invested hoping that the broadcast will cause rather keen interest," Peskov said.

"The fact that our national team's non-participation in the Olympic Games will reduce the Russian audience's interest in the broadcast is absolutely clear and indisputable. So, in this case, the channel's stance is absolutely justified, and we understand it," he said.

At the same time, he pointed out that it is still too early to speak of this.

"But I would like to reiterate that it is premature to speak about this, as preparations for the Olympic Games are continuing and, certainly, our sports authorities will maintain a quite patient dialogue with international sports organizations to ensure our further interaction and cooperation with the IOC [International Olympic Committee] and other organizations, cooperation with which is quite valuable for us," Peskov said.