McLaren Report confirmed Russian state-backed doping program

McLaren Report confirmed Russian state-backed doping programA report, published by an independent commission of the World Anti-Doping Agency on Monday, confirms evidence of widespread state-sponsored doping by Russian athletes at the Sochi Olympics. Dr Richard McLaren, an independent person appointed by WADA, said the Russian ministry of sport directed, controlled and oversaw the manipulation of samples, both in Moscow and in Sochi ahead of the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The new WADA investigation found that doping affected almost every sport, not just track and field. McLaren's report largely upheld the claims made to The New York Times by Grigory Rodchenkov, a former head of Russia's anti-doping laboratory, and described in far greater detail how the system was controlled directly by Russia's ministry of sport and aided by its FSB security service.

The investigation found that the Russian sports ministry and the FSB security service had facilitated and covered up systematic doping by competitors at the World Athletics Championships in Moscow, the World University Games in Kazan in 2013 and the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014.

The deputy sports minister, Yury Nagornykh, decided which positive doping samples should be hidden. The sports minister, Vitaly Mutko, probably knew about the cover-up efforts, McLaren said. The Russian sport ministry declined requests for comment on Monday.

Key findings of the investigation:
1. The Moscow Laboratory operated, for the protection of doped Russian athletes, within a State-dictated failsafe system, described in the report as the Disappearing Positive Methodology.
2. The Sochi Laboratory operated a unique sample swapping methodology to enable doped Russian athletes to compete at the Games.
3. The Ministry of Sport directed, controlled and oversaw the manipulation of athletes analytical results or sample swapping, with the active participation and assistance of the FSB, CSP, and both Moscow and Sochi Laboratories.

Also is mentioned that the Disappearing Positive Methodology was planned and operated over a period from at least late 2011 until August 2015.

In a statement published by the Kremlin Putin said there was no place for doping in sport as it was a threat to the lives and health of the athletes and discredited fair play. He added that Russian officials named in the report as directly responsible will be temporarily suspended but asked the Wada commission for more detailed and objective information.

The Russian athletics federation president, Dmitry Shlyakhtin, who was appointed as part of reforms after the organisation was banned last year over doping allegations, said the McLaren report was not confirmed by anything and that he hoped it would not influence the court of arbitration for sports decision on Russia, which is expected this week.

Summer Olympic sports federations said on Tuesday they are ready to deal with "individual cases" of Russian doping, rather than endorse a total ban on the Russian team for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics.

WADA and other anti-doping officials urged the International Olympic Committee to consider the unprecedented step of excluding the entire Russian contingent from the Rio Games.

The International Olympic Committee head, Thomas Bach, has promised to take the toughest sanctions available against organisations and individuals.
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