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Minister: WADA report is option to influence CAS decision on Russian athletes

July 16, 13:38 UTC+3
1 pages in this article

NOVOGORSK /Moscow region/, July 16. /TASS/. The report of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is an option to influence the decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on Russian athletes, Russia's Minister of Sports Vitaly Mutko told reporters on Saturday.

"The WADA report is an option to influence the court," he said. "To offer an opportunity to exclude the national team from the Games."

The WADA Independent Commission led by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren on investigation into accusations of doping manipulations at the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, is due to release a report on July 18. McLaren will report the investigation results to a special news conference due in Toronto.

"We are all looking forward to the report," the Russian minister said. "We understand what will be in it. Attempts to accuse the country of systematic approach to doping are groundless."

Two months earlier, former head of Moscow anti-doping laboratory Grigory Rodchenkov told Western media that Russian athletes allegedly used performance enhancing drugs at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi with the approval from the national sports authorities.

In an interview with New York Times, published in mid-May, Rodchenkov claimed that an unnamed official from the Russian Sports Ministry used to send him lists of national athletes, whose doping samples he had to substitute during the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

Rodchenkov also said that he developed a special cocktail consisting of three banned doping substances intended for the national athletes at home Games two years ago.

On the whole, the ex-doping official claimed that the Russian sports authorities allegedly prepared a special doping program for national athletes in order to win most of the medals at home Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014. Rodchenkov added that some Russian Olympic gold medalists in Sochi took banned substances.

Rodchenkov said he is ready to provide evidence to WADA and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and also evidence about the need to re-check the doping samples from the 2014 Winter Olympics kept in Lausanne.

WADA’s press service said: "On 18 May, Professor McLaren was appointed by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) as the Independent Person to head an investigative team charged with determining the facts with respect to the allegations of manipulation of doping control samples and other allegations made by Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov, the former Director of the WADA-accredited Moscow Laboratory. The investigation was launched to establish what actions must be taken in the best interest of clean sport and clean athletes."

The WADA Independent Commission published on November 9, 2015 the results of its probe into the activities of the All-Russian Athletics Federation (ARAF), the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) 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.

Eventually, the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations) decided to suspend ARAF’s membership in the global governing body of athletics and put forward six criteria, which ARAF was obliged to implement to restore its membership.

Starting this year doping control in Russian sports has been exercised by the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) strictly under the supervision of the British anti-doping agency (UKAD).

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