The International Association of Athletic Federations said on Friday that Russia’s track and field athletes could not compete at the games in Rio de Janeiro in August, after Moscow failed to prove that its doping regime could ensure that athletes were clean from performance-enhancing drugs, reports FT.
The IAAF council, chaired by its president, Sebastian Coe, a member of the British House of Lords, made its decision following recommendations from a five-person task force, headed by Norway’s Rune Andersen.
Speaking at a press conference, Lord Coe said that “Russian athletes could not credibly return to international competition without undermining the confidence of their competitors.”
Sounds like something between pre-crime penalties and guilty until proven innocent charges.
The Russian government has been furious about doping allegations, viewing the scandal as part of a western-inspired campaign against the country. Russia’s ministry of sport said it was “extremely disappointed” by the IAAF’s decision and would appeal to the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Earlier in the day, Vladimir Putin, Russian president, warned the international community against singling out his country over misconduct in sport, in a sign of the likely political fallout of an Olympic ban on Russian athletes.
“If somebody is trying to politicise this, that’s a big mistake,” Mr Putin told a business conference ahead of the IAAF decision.