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Russian Olympic chief Pozdnyakov says ‘Rodchenkov Act’ implies double standards

The so-called Rodchenkov Act, signed by US President Donald Trump Friday, applies to all competitions where the World Anti-Doping Agency rules are in place, however, professional North American leagues won’t be targeted by this law because they are not regulated by the WADA Code

MOSCOW, December 10. /TASS/. The so-called Rodchenkov Act, which was passed by the US legislators last week, implies a policy of double standards, Stanislav Pozdnyakov, the president of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) told journalists on Thursday.

"The ROC has thoroughly studied the new law, which came into power in the United States," Pozdnyakov said. "We believe that such approach of the United States is totally unacceptable."

"One should take care of the anti-doping issue in line with international standards at the national level before assuming monitoring duties in sports," he continued. "The US professional leagues are not participating in the international anti-doping coalition and they are all legally exempt from the WADA Code. Foreign anti-doping officers cannot execute their duties [in the United States."

"We [the Russian Olympic Committee] see a policy of double standards in the US approach to this problem," the ROC chief added.

The so-called Rodchenkov Act, was signed by US President Donald Trump last Friday. The Rodchenkov Act applies to all competitions where the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) rules are in place, however, professional North American leagues such as the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the National Hockey League (NHL) won’t be targeted by this law because they are not regulated by the WADA Code.

The act was named after a former director of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, Grigory Rodchenkov, who is positioned as WADA’s chief informer in the case of doping violations in Russian sports.

Ex-boss of Moscow’s anti-doping lab and his allegations

Rodchenkov told Western media in the spring of 2016 that Russian athletes largely used performance enhancing drugs at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi with the approval of the national sports authorities.

On the whole, the ex-doping official claimed that Russia’s sports authorities allegedly prepared a special doping program for national athletes in order to win most of the medals at the Winter Olympics in Sochi in 2014.

The former chief of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory also informed WADA about the so-called list of Russian athletes, who on the eve of the 2014 Winter Olympics allegedly used a doping cocktail that he concocted himself and named after a popular Soviet-era soft drink dubbed the ‘Duchess Cocktail.’

On June 8, 2016, Russia’s Investigative Committee launched a criminal case against Rodchenkov on charges of abuse of power. On September 21, 2017 Moscow’s Basmanny District Court arrested him in absentia.

In November 2017, the Russian Investigative Committee announced that it would seek the extradition of Rodchenkov, who absconded to the United States in 2015. In addition, an obstruction of justice charge was filed against him. He was also put on an international wanted list.