McLaren denies he ‘dropped charges’ of state involvement in doping in Russia

McLaren denies he ‘dropped charges’ of state involvement in doping in Russia
The head of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)-commissioned investigation Richard McLaren says he has not changed his position regarding the doping issues in Russian sport.

Following the statement, that came from the head of the Russian Independent Anti-Doping Commission, Vitaly Smirnov on Monday, in which he said that McLaren dropping his charges on state intervention, RT reached out to WADA for an official comment on the matter.

The response, which came on Tuesday, explained that McLaren has not changed his position.

“Professor Richard McLaren unequivocally stands by the results of his investigation. He is surprised by recent news reports to the contrary,” read the statement.

“Professor McLaren last met with Vitali Smirnov in October 2016 in Zurich, Switzerland. Mr. Smirnov explained that in Russia, the term 'state-sponsored' implicated Vladimir Putin and the Russian political leadership.

"Since Professor McLaren’s evidence stopped at the Minister of Sport and Deputy Minister, he accepted, even though he did not necessarily agree with the Russian interpretation, to modify his characterization of the Russian doping scheme to an 'institutional systematic evasion of doping control procedures.”

In 2016, Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren published two parts of his WADA-sanctioned report on doping in Russian sport. According to the report over 1,000 Russian athletes – in summer, winter and Paralympic competitions – benefited from the alleged state-backed plot to conceal positive doping tests.