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Russian sports minister: Russian athletics federation needs new anti-crisis manager

January 15, 2016, 13:32 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The ARAF needs a man who would be capable of putting the whole situation under control and bring the federation to the restoration of its powers, Vitaly Mutko says

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© AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev

MOSCOW, January 15. /TASS/. The All-Russia Athletics Federation needs a president who would come from outside, who would be able to assume the functions of anti-crisis manager, Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko has told TASS.

The election of the ARAF president is due on January 16. There are four candidates for the post: ARAF Secretary-General Mikhail Butov, Samara Region’s Sports Minister Dmitry Shlyakhtin, former European high jump champion, competing athlete Aleksandr Shustov, and former track-and-field athlete Maksim Karamashev.

"I believe that everything may still change as far as the candidates are concerned," Mutko said. "The ARAF needs a man who would be capable of putting the whole situation under control and bring the federation to the restoration of its powers. The ARAF needs an anti-crisis manager. Now, that we are about to hold an election in a federation that has been stripped of its rights. A federation that has in fact no rights at all. The ARAF needs a new man, someone beyond doubt."

Mutko refrained from comments regarding candidates for the post of the federation’s chief.

"The ARAF is a non-governmental organization. Let us avoid putting any pressures on it," he said.

The independent commission of the Word Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) on November 9, 2015 published the results of its investigation of the All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF), the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency RUSADA and the Sports Ministry. It brought a number of charges against Russian officials and athletes and called for disqualifying the Russian athletics federation. The Council of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) on November 13 by an overwhelming majority vote suspended the Russian federation’s membership. After that the IAAF said a special inspection commission had been created to assess progress in reforming the Russian federation. The first findings will be made public at a meeting of the IAAF Council in Cardiff on March 10-12, 2016. There is a risk Russia’s track-and-field athletics team may be barred from the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil.

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