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German journalist denies filming IAAF Council's report on Russia

March 11, 19:34 UTC+3 MONACO
According to TASS, Seppelt and his cameraman attempted to enter the conference room, where the report had been scheduled to be delivered to IAAF officials behind closed doors, but they were stopped
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Hajo Seppelt

Hajo Seppelt

© EPA/RAINER JENSEN

MONACO, March 11. /TASS/. Hajo Seppelt, a German journalist known for reports on high-profile doping scandals in Russian athletics, was denied to video record a closed session of the Council of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) during a report on the developing situation in Russian sports.

The IAAF Council is meeting in Monaco on March 10-11. Norwegian Rune Andersen, the head of the IAAF inspection team, was scheduled on Friday to present reports on the current situation in the Russian athletics as well as on reformations in the All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF).

According to a TASS correspondent reporting from the scene, Seppelt and his cameraman attempted to enter the conference room, where the report had been scheduled to be delivered to IAAF officials behind closed doors, but they were both stopped at the doors by security staff.

Although accredited, Seppelt tried to video record the conference, but was politely refused by the security, according to the correspondent.

In December 2014, ARD aired Seppelt’s first documentary on alleged doping abuse in Russian sports. The documentary, entitled Geheimsache Doping (Secret Doping Case), claimed that Russian athletes systematically took banned substances on instructions from their coaches.

Last August, ARD and Seppelt came up releasing another documentary "Doping - Top Secret: The Shadowy World of Athletics." The film claimed that ARD and British newspaper The Sunday Times had obtained a leaked database belonging to the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), which contained more than 12,000 blood tests from around 5,000 athletes in the years 2001 to 2012.

Early this week, Seppely came up with the third part of his documentaries named ‘Doping Top secret: Russia's Red Herrings.’

The series of German documentaries prompted a reaction from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which ruled early last year to set up an independent body to investigate the issue.

WADA’s Independent Commission handled the investigation and subsequently published last November results of its probe into the activities of the ARAF (the All-Russia Athletics Federation), the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, the RUSADA (Russian Anti-Doping Agency) and the Russian Sports Ministry.

The commission accused certain athletes and sports officials of doping abuse and involvement in other activities related to violations of international regulations on performance enhancing substances.

RUSADA and the Moscow anti-doping laboratory subsequently suspended their activities, while WADA’s Board of Founders approved the decision of the agency’s Independent Committee that RUSADA did not comply with the Code of the international anti-doping organization.

The IAAF said at its Council meeting in November that a report prepared by the ARAF on the struggle against doping was unsatisfactory and decided by a majority of votes to suspend Russia’s membership in the international athletics association.

International and Russian sports experts had repeatedly voiced their assumptions that it was highly possible for Russian national athletics teams to be suspended from the Summer Olympic Games in Brazil this year.

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