Anti-doping chief calls for Russia ban from Pyeongchang 2018 Games

  • Olympics
  • Russia
  • doping
  • IOC
  • INADO

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Anti-doping chief calls for Russia ban from Pyeongchang 2018 Games

Russia should be banned from next year's Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, the chief executive of the Institute of National Anti-Doping Agencies (iNADO) said in an interview published on Thursday.

Canadian Joseph de Pencier told German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung that Russia's doping-tainted past has not been dealt with in an appropriate way by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) which should have also barred all Russians from the Rio 2016 Games.

"So many investigations are ongoing, so many cases of athletes must be dealt with. We can't be assured that Russian athletes would be really be clean in Pyeongchang and would have not profited from the years-long cheating system," De Pencier said.

"Therefore we believe that exclusion would be the appropriate measure for this process."

Founded in 2012, the iNADO represents 69 national anti-doping agencies of which 37 recently in an open letter called on the IOC to ban all Russians from Pyeongchang.

World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) investigator Richard McLaren revealed institutional doping practices in Russia in two reports, including the tampering of samples at the Sochi 2014 Games.

The IOC stopped short of banning all Russians in Rio, with De Pencier naming this "a shame" as he insisted this measure should have been taken by the IOC "from a legal and athletes' point of view."

De Pencier suggested that the IOC was not transparent and playing for time as two IOC commissions are yet to complete their own probes with less than four months left until the start of the Pyeongchang Games.

"We are reaching a point when it becomes difficult for Nados and federations to act properly to the commission results and the ensuing IOC decision," De Pencier said.

"That makes it more likely that athletes who are not clean are competing in Pyeongchang."

There has speculation that Russia could get away with a fine but De Pencier said even a large sum - such as 100 million dollars - would not be enough as a signal.

De Pencier also firmly dismissed suggestions that the 37 Nados mainly from the western world were been exceptionally tough on Russia while not dealing properly with their own doping problems, saying "we would do and demand the same if this problem occurred in China, Thailand, Argentina or the USA."

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  • Reporting by: Ralf Jarkowski in Berlin
  • Editing by: Derek Wilson
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