Rus­sia to hold talks with WADA this week

Kuwait Times - - SPORTS -

MOSCOW: Rus­sia’s sports min­is­ter said yes­ter­day he would meet with the World Anti-Dop­ing Agency (WADA) in Frank­furt this week to dis­cuss a roadmap to re­vamp the coun­try’s scan­dal-rid­den anti-dop­ing sys­tem. The In­ter­na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Ath­let­ics Fed­er­a­tions (IAAF) this month pro­vi­sion­ally sus­pended Rus­sia af­ter a bomb­shell re­port pub­lished by a WADA in­de­pen­dent com­mis­sion found ev­i­dence of state-spon­sored dop­ing and large-scale cor­rup­tion in Rus­sian ath­let­ics.

Both Rus­sian anti-dop­ing agency RU­SADA and the Moscow anti-dop­ing lab­o­ra­tory were also sus­pended over the re­port. “We have de­cided what to do with RU­SADA with the lab­o­ra­tory,” sports min­is­ter Vi­taly Mutko told Rus­sian news agen­cies. “We will have meet­ings in Frank­furt on the 25th and 26th, we will de­sign a roadmap.” Rus­sia’s sus­pen­sion from in­ter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tion raises the pos­si­bil­ity that Rus­sian track and field stars could be side­lined from next sum­mer’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

But Rus­sia’s sports au­thor­i­ties re­main adamant Rus­sian track and field ath­letes will be in Rio, vow­ing to re­trieve IAAF mem­ber­ship within three months. Mutko said he had dis­cussed the cri­te­ria set by IAAF and WADA for Rus­sia’s read­mis­sion into the global ath­let­ics body with IAAF pres­i­dent Se­bas­tian Coe, and that Rus­sian sports au­thor­i­ties would meet with the IAAF in De­cem­ber. RU­SADA had stopped col­lect­ing ath­letes’ sam­ples as of yes­ter­day, Mutko said, adding the coun­try was ea­ger to reac­credit its anti-dop­ing body.

WADA’s re­port ac­cused RU­SADA of “rou­tinely” vi­o­lat­ing in­ter­na­tional test­ing stan­dards and al­low­ing ath­letes banned for dop­ing to com­pete de­spite hav­ing been sus­pended from com­pe­ti­tion, among other damn­ing ac­cu­sa­tions. —AFP

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