MOSCOW, November 10. /TASS/. The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) will make a decision on Russia’s membership reinstatement in the global organization on December 19, Insidethegames sports web portal reported on Friday.
"The IPC Governing Board will make its decision on December 19, and will make it known shortly after that date," Insidethegames cited IPC President Andrew Parsons as saying.
"We have important milestones before that date, with the WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) Board Meeting later this month, and the expected announcements from the two International Olympic Committee Commissions," Parsons was quoted as saying.
In July 2016, the IOC set up two separate commissions to probe doping abuse allegations in Russian sports as well as alleged involvement of state officials in manipulations with performance enhancing drugs, particularly at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia’s Sochi.
The first of the two commissions is an Inquiry Commission, chaired by the former President of Switzerland, Samuel Schmid. The commission is looking into accusations set out in the McLaren report that alleges the existence of a supposed institutional conspiracy in Russia’s summer and winter sports, in which the country’s state officials were allegedly engaged in.
The second investigative body at the issue is a Disciplinary Commission, chaired by IOC Member Denis Oswald. This commission is tasked to address alleged doping uses and manipulation of samples concerning the Russian athletes, who participated in the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014.
"The findings from WADA and the IOC will probably have some influence on the recommendations our own Taskforce will be making to the Governing Board," IPC President Parsons stated.
"The Board will not actually be meeting on December 19, but we expect to make a decision then based on the recommendations that will have been made to us," Parsons said. "We will not announce the decision on the same day, but probably a few days after."
On August 7, 2016, the IPC decided to bar the entire Russian team from taking part in the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on August 23, 2016 upheld the IPC ruling that came on the heels of a report delivered a month earlier by the WADA Independent Commission, chaired by Canadian sports law professor Richard McLaren.
Besides collectively punishing the Russian national team by banning it from the Rio Games, the IPC also decided to suspend the RPC (Russian Paralympic Committee) membership in the international organization.
In early September, the IPC Executive Board decided to extend the suspension of the RPC membership within the international organization, however, it pointed to the great progress achieved by Russia in pursuing the reinstatement criteria.
IPC ex-President Sir Philip Craven announced at that time that although the global Paralympic body had acknowledged Russia’s significant progress in working towards its membership reinstatement, the suspension would remain in force.
The September decision made by the ex-IPC president jeopardized further chances of Russia’s participation in the Paralympic Winter Games in South Korea’s PyeongChang next year.
Ex-President Craven, however, announced that Russian Para-athletes were given the green light for the qualifying tournaments of the 2018 Paralympics with the status of neutral representatives in four sports, namely alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing and snowboarding.