The World Anti-Doping Agency has urged the International Olympic Committee to reconsider its decision on banning Russian athletes from the Rio 2016 Games.
An independent WADA-commissioned report accused Russia of "a shocking and unprecedented attack on the integrity of sport and on the Olympic Games". The report also suggested a state-sponsored doping program was operated by Russia during the 2014 Sochi Winter Games. The latest report highlighted bribes, intimidation, and tampered packages that were a part of the Russian doping scandal.
It was concluded in the report by Canadian law professor Richard McLaren that Russia's Ministry of Sport directed, controlled and oversaw the manipulation of athlete's analytical results or sample swapping, with the active participation and assistance of the FSB, CSP, and both Moscow and Sochi Laboratories. The CSP is involved in the training of Russian athletes and FSB is Russia's federal security service.
McLaren told a press conference in Toronto that the investigation has established the findings set out in the report beyond a reasonable doubt. The Canadian law professor also remarked the evidence we have uncovered is all verifiable and can be cross-corroborated by multiple sources and also remarked he is unwaveringly confident in our report.
The investigation started on the back of claims by the former anti-doping laboratory director of Russia, Grigory Rodchenkov that he was ordered to cover up the drug use of at least 15 Sochi 2014 medal winners.
U.S. Anti-Doping Agency chief Travis Tygart, reacting to contents of the McLaren report, said the study has concluded, beyond a reasonable doubt, a mind-blowing level of corruption within both Russian sport and government that goes right to the field of play. Tygart called on the international community for rallying together to ensure this unprecedented level of criminality never again threatens the sports we cherish. The USADA chief said Russia should be banned entirely from next month's Olympics and added anything less than that sends the wrong messages.
Russian MP Irina Rodnina -- a three-time Olympic gold medalist in figure skating -- accused the McLaren report of a broader plan to deface Russia ahead of the Olympic Games. Irina remarked the McLaren report has been presented just few days ahead of the Rio Olympics, and it's been done this way deliberately.
The New York Times revealed anti-doping authorities from more than 10 countries -- including the United States Canada, Germany, Spain, Japan, and Switzerland -- are expected to file a request to have the entire Russian Olympic team banned from the Rio Olympics.
In a statement, the World Anti-Doping Agency called on the IOC and the International Paralympic Committee to consider, under their respective charters, to decline entries, for Rio 2016, of all athletes submitted by the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) and the Russian Paralympic Committee. WADA also recommended Russian officials should be denied access to international competitions, including Rio 2016.
The International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach said in a statement the IOC will not hesitate to take the toughest sanctions available against any individual or organization implicated. The IOC Executive Board is likely to decide on Tuesday what further sanctions Russia will face.
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