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Russian sports authorities to appeal to IAAF ethics committee — minister

July 21, 17:11 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Russian Olympic Committee expects IOC to make just and biased decision on admitting ‘pure’ athletes to Olympics
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Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko

Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko

© Vladimir Gerdo/TASS

MOSCOW, July 21. /TASS/. The Russian sports authorities intend to turn to the ethics committee of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) as no probes of this organization’s activity are held, Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said on Thursday.

"We recognize and respect the decision by the Court of Arbitration for Sport. This is a judicial body but the IAAF’s behavior and persistence cause indignation," Mutko said.

"Corruption has been exposed in it and criminal proceedings are under way against its former president [Lamine Diack] and he is under home arrest in France. We have also read about how Sebastian Coe [the IAAF head] got the seat of the organization’s president. Our athletes and we intend to apply to the ethics committee [of the IAAF]," the Russian sports minister said.

WADA commission’s report provides non-professional data

The minister said information provided in the recent report is non-professional and does not contain trustworthy data.

"The Russian team is currently in the focus of the world’s attention," Mutko said. "It is not up to me to evaluate all these ‘[doping] cocktails.’ But it is not true when somebody alleges that an athlete can consume such ‘cocktail’ and go winning a medal after two weeks. Such information targets amateurs."

"One should not be aiming at suspending and punishing the whole country but must aim at setting up a system, which can be trusted by everyone," Mutko said.

Russian teams in various sports passed total doping control

According to Mutko, a number of Russian national teams from various sports were recently subjected to a total doping control within the frames of preparations for the 2016 Summer Olympics.

"Our athletes have been recently under a total doping control," Mutko told journalists. "Visits [of doping control inspectors] were paid to wrestlers, gymnasts and other teams."

All Russian 2014 Sochi Olympians are doping clean

The minister stressed that the Russian sports authorities have no doubts that all its Olympians from the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi are doping-clean and each athlete is ready for re-tests if necessary.

"We are absolutely confident that our athletes from the Sochi Games are clean and we are ready for any re-test of doping samples," he said. "If an athlete is caught, a punishment would definitely to ensue."

Time to turn to civil court

The minister noted the ruling means it’s time for Russia to safeguard its rights in a civil court of law.

"The court has passed a judgement that violates the rights of ‘clean,’ conscientious athletes, thus creating a precedent. The [Richard] McLaren report has undoubtedly affected the CAS’ ruling. I believe we’ll continue defending our honor and dignity and time has come to apply to a civil court," Mutko said.

Russia expects IOC to make fair decision 

The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) expects the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to make a fair and unbiased decision on allowing ‘clean’ Russian athletes to take part in the 2016 Summer Olympics, the ROC said in a statement.

"The ROC hopes the IOC and international Olympic sports federations will make a fair and unbiased decision on admitting clean Russian athletes to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro," the ROC said.

"Russia's Olympic Committee is utterly frustrated with the ruling of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on the OCR lawsuit against the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF). The most dangerous precedent has been created and since the moment the entire sporting community will live under new laws. We do not know where today's CAS ruling has stemmed from and what has motivated it but the OCR is determined in its activities to fight for the rights of all 'clean' athletes to the end at any international human rights organizations as we are absolutely convinced that personal responsibility cannot and must not include the innocent ones," the statement said.

The ROC assesses as discrimination the criteria under which the IAAF banned Russian track and field athletes from international competitions, including the Olympic Games, since no-one should be forced to leave the home country.

"Now this criterion has been adopted by the world’s supreme court for sport disputes as lawful and legally binding. Henceforth, international sports federations are given green light for depriving any athlete of a possibility to live and train in their own country for the span of time, not restricted by any deadline, if they express willingness to participate in international competitions," the statement reads.

"The CAS ruling violates the rights of all ‘clean’ athletes who since today will bear responsibility for the others’ guilt," it said.

The ROC did not expect that anything like this could have taken place in the aspect of legal international relations.

"Since now, a new page has been turned in the global Olympic movement which ideals and principles have suffered the most powerful blow," the statement said. "The rights of a ‘clean’ athlete are now little or nothing as any moment he or she may be made ‘an innocent victim,’ according to the CAS officials. Therefore, the Olympic Committee of Russia will undertake every possible required step in the future to defend the rights of athletes who have never breached a single rule and have dedicated their lives and career to the goal of competing at the Olympic Games and were denied this dream today, without any guilt."

Earlier on Thursday the Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected the appeal of the Russian Olympic Committee and 68 Russian track and field athletes against the suspension imposed by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

On June 17, the IAAF Council ruled to extend the suspension of the All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF) from all international tournaments, including the 2016 Olympic Games.

IAAF’s anti-doping department rejected personal applications from all Russian athletes for participation in international competitions, including the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, except for long jump athlete Darya Klishina, who lives in the United States.

The IOC said its executive board will discuss the issue of the Russian Olympic team’s participation in the 2016 Olympics on Sunday, July 24.

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