Russian announces anti-doping reforms in bid to overturn Rio ban

Russia has appointed international experts to assist with anti-doping reforms, the sports ministry said Wednesday, as the country strives to clean up its act in time for the Rio Olympics.

“The experts were nominated by WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) and will be given full and free access to all anti-doping operations in Russia for as long as necessary,” the statement said, adding that the experts would be based full-time in Moscow starting at the end of April.

“Their role will be to ensure the Russian anti-doping system is free of undue interference and is fully independent.”

The identity of the experts has not been disclosed.

Russia is fighting to overturn a ban imposed on its track and field team by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) after a WADA independent commission report found evidence of state-sponsored doping and mass corruption in Russian athletics.

The IAAF is expected to make a decision on whether to lift the suspension to permit Russian athletes to participate in Rio at an extraordinary Council meeting next month.

The sports ministry pledged that Russian track and field athletes hoping to compete in Rio will “undergo a minimum of three independent, externally administered anti-doping controls before the Olympic Games” that will be carried out by the IAAF.

These tests will be carried out in addition to the existing anti-doping procedures, the statement said.

Moscow has vowed to revamp its anti-doping programme in time for its track and field athletes to compete in Rio.

Speaking Wednesday at a joint press conference with FIFA president Gianni Infantino, Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko said that the country’s anti-doping system would be revamped “by the end of the year”.

WADA last week revoked the accreditation of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, which had also been suspended over the WADA report that found its director, Grigory Rodchenkov, had “authorized the disposal of 1,417 samples”.


© 1994-2016 Agence France-Presse


Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted

A South African Hero: You

There’s a 99.7% chance that this isn’t for you. Only 0.3% of our readers have responded to this call for action.

Those 0.3% of our readers are our hidden heroes, who are fuelling our work and impacting the lives of every South African in doing so. They’re the people who contribute to keep Daily Maverick free for all, including you.

The equation is quite simple: the more members we have, the more reporting and investigations we can do, and the greater the impact on the country.

Be part of that 0.3%. Be a Maverick. Be a Maverick Insider.

Support Daily Maverick→
Payment options

MavericKids vol 3

How can a child learn to read if they don't have a book?

81% of South African children aged 10 can't read for meaning. You can help by pre-ordering a copy of MavericKids.

For every copy sold we will donate a copy to Gift of The Givers for children in need of reading support.