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> If I take such a decision, will you and people close to you support this decision?>>
Reuter's bureau chief in Moscow Christian Lowe, explains.>> Putin has been able to present to the Russian public Russia's exclusion from the Olympics and allegations of doping as a Western plot against Russia that's politically motivated. That's the line that he's been presenting and his officials have been presenting to the Russian public for some months now.
>> The IOC announced on Tuesday evidence had emerged of, quote, unprecedented systematic manipulation of the anti-doping system. However, the door is open for individual clean Russian athletes to compete as neutrals. Putin has said Russia won't stand in athletes' way if they wish to take part. The IOC's move is seen in Moscow as a humiliating and politically tinged attack, and Putin may indeed use that to get Russians out to vote.
>> One of the ways that we're being told by analysts and people close to the Kremlin, that they plan to do that, is to present this narrative of Russia being surrounded by enemies on the threat. A victim of a international conspiracy.>> If Putin wins it will extend the reign of a man who has dominated Russia's political landscape for the last 17 years.