Each Russian 2014 Olympian ready for doping re-tests: Minister
Moscow, July 20 (IANS) Each Russian athlete who competed in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi is ready for his or her doping samples collected at the Games to be re-analysed, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said.
“We have the specific (Olympic) team. Each athlete has a personal profile and can be subjected to testing and re-testing. We will not be either hiding anyone or covering up for someone,” Mutko said in an interview with TASS on Tuesday.
“We are ready for cooperation with the IOC (International Olympic Committee) in this regard, but the sports movement, including the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), should assume personal responsibility as well,” Mutko added.
The IOC Executive Board held a telephone conference earlier regarding the recent report of the WADA Independent Commission on the widespread doping abuse and manipulations at the 2014 Sochi Olympics and announced a number of provisional measures as a result.
Among the measures was the decision to launch a re-analysis of all Russian athletes who participated in the 2014 Winter Olympic Games.
“The IOC will initiate re-analysis, including forensic analysis, and a full inquiry into all Russian athletes who participated in the Olympic Winter Games Sochi 2014 and their coaches, officials and support staff,” the IOC said in its statement.
Mutko went on to say that Russia cannot agree with the WADA findings until an internal probe is over.
“In this case, we will once again revise our relations with WADA as we believe that this organisation is to be held responsible for what is going on in the system of anti-doping,” he said.
“We have been relying on them, we have been guided by their standards, their system of control, the accreditations they issued to our laboratories and organisations. It was them who controlled the system of doping control, including at the Sochi Olympics.”
“So far, we cannot agree with the findings until we have verified facts. Once our law enforcers conduct a probe and find these materials convincing, everybody will be held answerable personally. But we must go on, we cannot lose Russian sport,” Mutko stressed.
Mutko also said he was ready to skip travelling to the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil’s Rio de Janeiro as this issue was not the most important at the moment.
The IOC on Tuesday said that Mutko will not be accredited to the Rio 2016 Olympics as a person named in the WADA report.