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WADA decision will not affect swimming competitions in Russia — official

The WADA Executive Committee ruled to strip Russia of the right to participate in major international sports tournaments, including the Olympics and World Championships, for the period of four years

MOSCOW, December 9. /TASS/. President of the Russian Swimming Federation Vladimir Salnikov told TASS he is confident that the decision of the Executive Committee of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to annul the compliance status of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) will not affect the hosting of major swimming competitions in Russia.

"Our athletes will prepare, work and perform. I am sure that all tournaments in Russia will be held. The international federations — FINA (International Swimming Federation) and LEN (European Swimming League), with which we work, do not look at any speculations and they understand Russia's contribution to the development of swimming and the international movement. They trust us, and I think that all tournaments will take place," Salnikov said.

"I believe that all these decisions are so politicized that counter-proposals can be put forward. I can’t talk about them now, but anyone who decides to split the Olympic movement can be held personally and maybe collectively liable. Why not discuss this topic," he added.

Kazan is due to host the European Short Course Swimming Championships in 2021, the European Aquatics Championships in 2024 and the World Aquatics Championships in 2025.

The WADA Executive Committee (ExCo) approved on Monday recommendations of its Compliance Review Committee (CRC) to annul the compliance status of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) as well as to strip Russia of the right to participate in major international sports tournaments, including the Olympics and World Championships, for the period of four years.

The WADA ExCo also ruled that Russia must not host, or bid for hosting any major international sports tournament in the four-year period. Russian state officials as well as the staff of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) and the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC) have been also banned from attending all major international sports tournaments for the period of four years.

On November 25, the WADA CRC reiterated its previous recommendation for the world anti-doping body’s Executive Committee to strip RUSADA of its compliance status and came up with a recommendation of additional sanctions against Russian sports.