Bach says Russia ban is to protect athletes, not punish them


              FILE - International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach, third from left, and Russian President Vladimir Putin, third from right, wave to spectators during the closing ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics, on Feb. 23, 2014, in Sochi, Russia. International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach says Russian athletes and officials who have been banned from international sporting events because of the war in Ukraine are being protected rather than punished.  (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
            
              The Olympic TV tower is illuminated in the colors of the Ukrainian flag to show solidarity with the country at the Olympic park in Munich, Germany, Monday, May 2, 2022. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)
            
              Russian President Vladimir Putin meets with Russian athletes during an awarding ceremony for the Russian Olympic Committee's medalists of the XXIV Olympic Winter Games in Beijing and members of the Russian Paralympic team in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, April 26, 2022. (Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)
            
              International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, center, speaks with young athletes at the Olympics Unleashed session at the Yeronga Park Sports Centre in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday, May 7, 2022. Bach was in Brisbane on Saturday for the first time since the Queensland state capital was awarded the 2032 Olympics. (Jason O'Brien/AAP Image via AP)
Bach says Russia ban is to protect athletes, not punish them