WADA reinstates Russian anti-doping agency, ending 3-year suspension
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Executive Committee has voted to reinstate Russia’s anti-doping agency (RUSADA), after it reached agreement on two remaining requirements stipulated by the watchdog.
RUSADA was declared compliant with the WADA code at an Executive Board meeting in the Seychelles on Thursday.
According to reports, nine out of 12 Executive Committee members voted to reinstate Russia’s anti-doping body, with two members voting against it and one abstaining.
In a statement, WADA President Craig Rededie said: “Today, the great majority of WADA’s ExCo decided to reinstate RUSADA as compliant with the Code subject to strict conditions, upon recommendation by the Agency’s independent CRC and in accordance with an agreed process.
“This decision provides a clear timeline by which WADA must be given access to the former Moscow laboratory data and samples with a clear commitment by the ExCo that should this timeline not be met, it would support the CRC’s recommendation to reinstate non-compliance.”
A significant breakthrough in the long-running doping row was made after officials agreed on the two remaining criteria outlined in WADA’s Roadmap to Compliance.
The requirements were to publicly accept the findings of the WADA-commissioned investigation into alleged state-sponsored doping by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren, and to provide access to samples in Moscow’s anti-doping laboratory.
In a letter sent to WADA on September 13, the Russian Ministry of Sport outlined that it “fully accepted” the findings of the Schmid Report, which led to the country’s ban from the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea.
“The Russian Federation fully accepted the decision of the IOC Executive Board of December 5, 2017 that was made based on the findings of the Schmid Report,” the letter read.
The step was accepted by WADA despite being slightly amended from the initial requirements.
Russian officials assured WADA they would provide access to data and samples sealed in the Moscow anti-doping laboratory following RUSADA’s reinstatement.
The WADA reinstatement means that the sanctions originally imposed on the body in 2015 will be lifted.