WADA lifts ban on Russian anti-doping Agency

The World Anti-Doping Authority has lifted the suspension of Russia’s anti-doping agency after three years.

In 2015, WADA released an independent report revealing state-sponsored doping in Russian track and field athletics. This ultimately lead to the suspension of Russia’s anti-doping agency (RUSADA), until now.

“Today, the great majority of WADA’s ExCo members decided to reinstate RUSADA as compliant with the Code subject to strict conditions, upon recommendation by the Agency’s independent CRC and in accordance with an agreed process.,” said WADA president Craig Reedie.

“This decision provides a clear timeline by which WADA must be given access to the former Moscow laboratory data and samples with a clear commitment by the ExCo that should this timeline not be met, the ExCo would support the CRC’s recommendation to reinstate non-compliance.

“By the terms of today’s ExCo decision, we now have a clear timeline to be granted access to the Moscow Laboratory, which has been sealed off due to a federal investigation. The sooner we are able to access the required data and samples, with the potential to implicate or exonerate a great many athletes, the better.

“If the Russian authorities continue to refuse access and do not meet our deadlines, then RUSADA will again be declared non-compliant under the ISCCS that offers a much more robust legal framework and a clear process.”

Despite the strict regulations still in place, the decision has drawn much criticism. US Anti-Doping Agency chief Travis Tygart called the move “bewildering and inexplicable”.

Meanwhile, a lawyer for Doctor Grigory Rodchenkov – the Russian whistleblower who revealed the Sochi skulduggery – called the decision “the greatest treachery against clean athletes in Olympic history”.