Anti-doping agencies call for Russia Winter Olympics ban


In strongly worded comments following a meeting between 17 anti-doping agencies in Colorado, which included the US Anti-Doping Agency and UK Anti-Doping, the organisations also warned the IOC that its continuing reluctance to hold Russian Federation to account for what it called "one of the biggest scandals in sports history" at the Sochi Winter Games in 2014 threatens the future of the Olympic movement. Not wanting to see a repeat, a group of 17 anti-doping leaders released a statement Thursday calling for a complete ban of the Russian Olympic Committee from Pyeongchang.

"I will do everything I can to improve the accountability and transparency of this great organization so that we can enjoy the confidence of the rest of the world", said Ban Ki-moon before the press.

Organisers hope to sell at least 1.07 milion and said the competition schedule now posted on the PyeongChang 2018 website would help build excitement. "The mishandling of this Russian Federation doping crisis has left the athletes of the world wondering if global anti-doping regulations have teeth and whether their fundamental right to clean sport matters".

"We have serious doubts that the 2018 Games will be clean due to the incomplete investigation of massive evidence of individual doping by Russians athletes at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games and given the inadequate testing evidence of Russian athletes over the past four years", the joint statement said. "The first ones were the quickest to be dealt with, because they're the ones with the least evidence".

The IOC stopped short of a full ban of the Russian athletes at last year's Summer Games, instead giving global sports federations a handful of days to determine eligibility of individual athletes. The other report about whether state-sponsored doping exists, as shown in both McLaren's research and a previous investigation by International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound is also on track to be done before the Olympics. "Both Paris and Los Angeles have both played host to hugely successful Olympic equestrian sport, but also both countries have hosted our flagship event, the FEI World Equestrian Games, so we are confident the infrastructure and knowledge base is already in place".

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Earlier in August, Mutko said it will not take long to implement the remaining World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) criteria for the reinstatement of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA).

Last year Dr. Grigory Rodchenkov, who was then the director of WADA, publicly stated that he was an integral part of a far-reaching, state-sponsored conspiracy to allow Russian athletes to cheat doping tests. More than 280 Russians participated, and given evidence of the state-sponsored, systemic doping program in the country, there were howls of protest across the globe. But the International Olympic Committee has made no such requirements.

IOC President Thomas Bach said the committees are "working hard all the time". "This is especially unfair when athletes are punished when they violate the rules", NADO leaders said.

But the clock is ticking.