WADA: Russia remains suspended as non-compliant with anti-doping code

Berlin (dpa) - The Russian anti-doping agency RUSADA remains suspended as it is still not compliant with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) code following a doping scandal in the country.

After a meeting in Seoul on Thursday, WADA said its foundation board approved a recommendation by a review committee that RUSADA remained non-compliant.
The announcement could harm Russian hopes of avoiding a blanket ban from the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, in February.
RUSADA has been suspended since 2015 over a state-sponsored doping programme and WADA's independent investigator Richard McLaren revealed the manipulation of samples at the home Sochi Games in 2014.
The WADA review committee said Russia failed to fulfill two reinstatement criteria, namely the public recognition of McLaren on systematic doping and lack of access to the doping test samples of the Moscow anti-doping laboratory.
Russia has continually denied the existence of an institutional doping programme and claims the laboratory samples are unavailable due to an ongoing investigation in the country.
RUSADA had previously promised to follow international recommendations to get the suspension lifted and sports minister Pavel Kolobkov and Alexander Zhukov, president of the Russian Olympic Committee addressed the meeting on other reforms carried out.
"The Board was encouraged by the significant progress achieved by RUSADA under its new management with the support of WADA,” WADA chairman Craig Reedie said.
“However, there was clear consensus by the Board that the two outstanding Roadmap criteria were critical to global confidence and to operating in a credible environment."
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) will decide on Russian participation in the Winter Games at its next board meeting December 5-7.
The IOC decided against complete ban on Russian athletes at the 2016 summer Games in Rio de Janeiro.
"No one expected any other decision, it had been announced by the commissions and well-informed media outlets," Russian Deputy Prime Minister Vitaly Mutko told the state agency TASS.
"They have no new decisions for us," said Mutko, who claimed the RUSADA suspension and Russian participation in Pyeongchang "are two different matters that are not linked to each other."
Alexander Ivlev, chairman of the RUSADA supervisory board, meanwhile called "to continue dialogue and search for a solution, even if this seems to be impossible sometimes."
Apart from Russia, the WADA board also declared Equatorial Guinea, Kuwait and Mauritius to be non-compliant and approved an 8 per cent increase to the WADA budget for 2018.


Thursday, November 16th 2017
By dpa correspondents

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