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Russia’s track and field athletics body must be reinstated with IAAF, Isinbayeva says

The All-Russia Athletics Federation has implemented all requirements of the International Association of Athletics Federations, recalled the Russian athlete
Yelena Isinbayeva Sergei Karpukhin/TASS
Yelena Isinbayeva
© Sergei Karpukhin/TASS

SUDAK /Crimea/, August 26. /TASS/. The All-Russia Athletics Federation (RusAF) has implemented all requirements stipulated in the Road Map of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and must be now reinstated with the global athletics organization, Russia’s legendary pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva said on Monday.

Two-time Olympic pole vault champion and International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Yelena Isinbayeva was attending the Tavrida-ART festival of creative communities near the city of Sudak in Russia’s Crimea on Monday.

Asked whether the IAAF should reinstate RusAF’s membership, Isinbayeva replied "they ought to."

"It is impossible to provide guarantees since it is a process, which is too difficult to predict," Isinbayeva stated. "But it is important that the criteria and provisions in the Road Map, which had been set for the federation to be implemented, were all met."

"This is why we are looking forward to the IAAF Council and to its positive outcome for our [track and field athletics] federation," Isinbayeva added.

The issue of Russia’s membership reinstatement will be discussed at the IAAF Council and Congress shortly before the upcoming world championship. The 2019 IAAF World Championships is scheduled to take place in Qatar’s Doha between September 27 and October 6.

The IAAF suspended RusAF’s membership in November 2015, following a wave of anti-doping rules violations and formed a special mission on the issue. The IAAF Taskforce Group, led by Norwegian expert Rune Andresen, was set up to oversee Russia’s implementation of requirements for RusAF’s membership reinstatement with the IAAF.

The IAAF permitted clean athletes from Russia to participate in the international tournaments under the neutral status or the Authorized Neutral Athlete (ANA) until the membership of the RusAF was reinstated.

On December 18, 2018, the IAAF Doping Review Board approved an updated version of the Guidance Note for Authorized Neutral Athlete (ANA) status applications and sent the document to the RusAF.

The RusAF started accepting neutral status applications from national track and field athletes on December 19, 2018. The world’s governing athletics body has already granted neutral-status participation permits to 118 Russian track and field athletes.

Isinbayeva also said she hoped that the situation with RusAF’s membership reinstatement would be resolved and the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo would see track and field athletes from Russia competing under their national flag.

"Just like everybody else I am expecting a positive outcome of the situation," she said. "I keep believing that our track and field athletes will be competing under the national flag in Tokyo."

The 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo are scheduled to be held between July 24 and August 9 and the 2020 Summer Paralympic Games will run between August 25 and September 6. The Olympic flame will be lit on March 11, 2020 in memory of the 2011 tragedy and the Olympic torch relay will start on March 26, 2020 from the Fukushima Prefecture.