Russia protests anti-doping agency's ban
World Anti-Doping Agency's decision to ban Russia from international competitions 'anti-Russian hysteria', says premier
The World Anti-Doping Agency's (WADA) decision to ban Russia from major sporting events was widely protested by Russian officials on Monday.
Head of the Russian National Olympic Committee Stanislav Pozdnyakov called the WADA's measures against Russia "disproportionate and excessive."
He vowed to do “everything” to ensure the possibility for the Russian athletes to compete under the national flag at the international championships.
"The sanctions are disproportionate and excessive in nature. We are convinced that Russian athletes should go to the Games [Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo] as part of the national team, as the Olympic Charter prescribes. We will do everything to ensure that Russian athletes perform in Tokyo under the flag of Russia," he said.
In a separate statement, Russia's Minister of Sport Pavel Kolobkov said Moscow did everything the WADA demanded although the agency was “constantly increasing demands”.
Kolobkov said the WADA has no complaints about today's Russian anti-doping system, adding its allegations are related to the period of time when Russian anti-doping system was headed by Grigory Rodchenkov, who fled to the U.S. in 2016 and there he accused Russia of organizing a regular system of doping violations.
Kolobkov added it was too early to speak about sanctions against Russian athletes as Russia will challenge the decision in the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).
Earlier, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev called WADA's decision "anti-Russian hysteria" at the meeting with his deputies.
"The fact that all these decisions are being repeated, and often against athletes who have already been punished, not to mention other points, gives an idea that it is the continuation of the anti-Russian hysteria that has become chronic," he said.
On Monday, the WADA announced its decision to ban Russia from major international competitions for four years. Russian athletes will be able to compete under the neutral flag, and the country's officials and representatives will be barred from participation.
The WADA also prohibited Russia to host and bid for hosting major events during the same period.
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