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WADA confirms Russian anti-doping agency’s reinstatement

The decision was not argued and was taken by the great majority of the WADA Executive Committee

MOSCOW, September 20. /TASS/. /TASS/. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) confirmed on Thursday that the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) has been reinstated.

The decision was made during the meeting of the WADA Executive Committee in the Seychelles on Thursday.

"Today, the great majority of WADA’s ExCo decided to reinstate RUSADA as compliant with the Code subject to strict conditions, upon recommendation by the Agency’s independent CRC [Compliance Review Committee] and in accordance with an agreed process," WADA President Sir Craig Reedie said, according to the organization’s Twitter.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Olga Golodets, who oversees sports and culture, hailed the decision, saying: "Russia confirms its commitment to the principle of clean sports competition. Over the past years, Russia has done a huge job on creating transparent and clear conditions for the effort on countering doping."

"For the first time, amendments to the legislation have been passed envisaging criminal accountability for inciting to use banned medicines," Golodets stressed, noting that the list of substances and methods, which are unacceptable in sport, has been approved. A serious work has been carried out in training athletes, who must be committed not to use doping.

International experts have confirmed that RUSADA’s effort meets the highest global requirements.

On September 14, the WADA Compliance Review Committee (CRC) recommended the Executive Committee to make a decision on the reinstatement of RUSADA in its full rights. Most members of the committee backed Russia’s proposals on meeting two last requirements of the roadmap on the RUSADA reinstatement.

The first requirement was to recognize the conclusions made by the WADA Independent Commission, chaired by Canadian sports law professor Richard McLaren, revealing that the country allegedly exploited a doping system in sports at the state level between 2011 and 2015. The second requirement demanded access to the data on checking doping samples and samples from the Moscow anti-doping laboratory.

The sides agreed that Russia acknowledged the violations by some officials and would engage an independent expert recommended by WADA in working with the Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) database of the former WADA-accredited Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory.

The Executive Committee needs to define a particular time framework for fulfilling the agreements, and their violation would result in new sanctions against RUSADA.

RUSADA was declared non-compliant with the WADA Code in November 2015 after a doping scandal in Russia’s track and field athletics. New doping revelations were later made based on claims of former head of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory Grigory Rodchenkov, who moved to the United States. Amid the continuing doping scandals, the decision on reinstating the organization has been postponed many times.