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Russian athletics body says 28 athletes barred from competing over absence of due testing

Overall, 45 applications from Russian athletes for their participation in international competitions have been declined by now

MOSCOW, May 31. /TASS/. The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has banned 28 Russian athletes from international competitions as it believes they have failed to pass a due number of doping tests, All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF) Executive Director Alexander Parkin told TASS on Wednesday.

The IAAF announced on Wednesday it had allowed Russian athletes Kseniya Aksyonova, Vera Rebrik and Vera Rudakova to compete internationally as neutrals. At the same time, the international athletics body declined applications filed by 28 Russian athletes.

Overall, 45 applications from Russian athletes for their participation in international competitions have been declined by now.

"There are veterans among these 28 athletes and this is especially regrettable because they could have been cleared. The ban is related to the absence of a due number of doping tests. We (the ARAF) are concerned over the issue of the RUSADA’s reinstatement and we hope that the organization will be reinstated in its rights and we will have testing organized at the proper level," Parkin said.

"It is regrettable personally for me that Mikhail Vinogradov has been barred. He is a veteran and a coach who has worked abroad. He is an active participant in the movement for clean sports," he said.

When asked about whether it seemed to him that the IAAF was considering for too long the applications of Russian athletes for their admission to international competitions, Parkin answered: "We are bothering them each week so that they can expedite the admission process. There is movement but we would like it to be faster."

Last month, the IAAF announced its decision to grant the right for several Russian track and field athletes to take part in international competitions as neutral athletes. Athletes of former Soviet republics, including Russia, participated under a neutral flag in the 1992 Summer Olympics in Spain following the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991.

In early January, the IAAF issued criteria, which Russian track and field athletes should meet in order to file applications for participating in international competitions as neutral athletes. All applications had to be submitted with the IAAF via the ARAF.

In 2015, the WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) Independent Commission carried out an investigation in regard to the activities of the ARAF, the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) and the Russian Sports Ministry.

The commission accused certain athletes and sports officials of doping abuse and involvement in other activities related to violations of international regulations on performance enhancing substances.

Eventually, the IAAF decided to suspend ARAF’s membership in the global governing body of athletics and put forward a host of criteria, which the Russian ruling body of track and field sports was obliged to implement to restore its membership in the global federation.