Vladimir Putin visits Team USA at Sochi headquarters


Russian president Vladimir Putin visited Team USA’s Sochi headquarters today for about half an hour, and United States Olympic Committee president Scott Blackmun said that politics never came up during conversations.

According to Blackmun, Putin wanted to see if the Americans were having any issues regarding certain aspects of the Games, such as transportation and venues.

“It was really him just wanting to know is the work they did and the service they’re providing up to our standard,” Blackmun said to USA Today. “That was the primary purpose of his visit.”

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“He did a very, very good job of explaining to us why this is good for Russia. And our athletes are very happy with the services being provided here.”

But it wasn’t entirely all business at USA House. Putin took part in a toast with USOC officials, choosing a glass of red wine for the occasion.

Blackmun chose to focus discussion on the events “we’re sport people, not political people.”

“When a head of state called and asked if he could visit, we were delighted,” he said. “We certainly didn’t get into any of the things that are deeper issues.

“All we talked about was sport, and that’s appropriate given that that’s all we do.”

source: AP
USOC president Scott Blackmun (left) chats with Russian president Vladimir Putin (right) during the latter’s visit to USA House in Sochi. Photo: AP