Russia athletics chief London bound in bid to end ban
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[July 31, 2017]
(Reuters) - Russia's head of
athletics Dmitry Shlyakhtin is traveling to London this week to
address the sport's governing body in a bid to have his country's
international ban lifted.
Shlyakhtin, president of Russia's athletics federation (RUSAF), will
make a speech at the International Association of Athletics
Federations (IAAF) Congress on Thursday, a day before the World
Championships begin at the London Stadium.
RUSAF has been banned since November 2015 after an independent World
Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) inquiry exposed state-sponsored doping on
a massive scale.
Russia's deputy prime minister, Vitaly Mutko, said last week that
RUSAF was unlikely to be reinstated during the Congress, although 19
Russian athletes have been given permission to compete as neutrals
"He (Shlyakhtin) will be given the floor to speak for the first time
and the (IAAF) Congress will decide whether to keep the suspension
or to extend it further," Mutko was quoted as saying by TASS news
agency last week.
"Of course we would like to hope for the positive decision. But I
believe we can already guess the outcome -- while there is no
decision from the IOC (International Olympic Committee), everyone
will keep waiting for it."
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All-Russian Athletics Federation (ARAF) president Dmitry Shlyakhtin
speaks during an interview in Moscow, Russia, May 23, 2016.
The Russian anti-doping agency (RUSADA) is still
deemed non-compliant by WADA even though it has been allowed to
resume testing under the supervision of international appointed
experts and the UK anti-doping agency (UKAD), after meeting
conditions set down by the global anti-doping body.
Both the IAAF and International Paralympic Committee (IPC) still
regard Russia as non-compliant.
(Writing by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by John O'Brien)
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