IAAF maintains ban on Russian federation

MONACO: The IAAF on Tuesday upheld a ban against Russia’s athletics federation over doping in the country, pending full access to doping data stored in Moscow and financial compensation. Russia’s athletics federation (Rusaf) has been suspended since 2015 over a report commissioned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) that found evidence of widespread, state-sponsored doping in the sport. The IAAF, the sport’s governing body, said Rusaf still needed to meet two criteria — access to samples of Russian athletes in a Moscow lab and full financial compensation for investigation and legal costs — before the ban is lifted. Russia’s reinstatement has been rejected on numerous occasions by the IAAF over the past three years and should it fail to meet conditions in the coming months, it could risk missing out again on sending a team to next September’s world athletics championships in Doha, Qatar.
The European indoor championships are even earlier, in Glasgow in March, and take place before the next IAAF Council meeting has a chance to meet to discuss further developments later that month. Since 2015, some individual Russian athletes have been allowed to compete internationally as neutrals provided they met certain criteria that showed they had operated in a dope-free environment. “If the Russians can and will release the (drugs) samples is up to them. I hope they will deliver the data by the end of this year,” said Rune Andersen, head of the IAAF’s task force on Russia, sitting next to IAAF President Sebastian Coe. “We have received no assurances that it will be delivered to us directly. The assurances have been given to Wada and Wada has set a deadline of December 31. We will have to rely on receiving the data from Wada.” — Reuters