Doping system imposed on Russia is not effective: Zhukov
By Karolos Grohmann
BERLIN (Reuters) - The drugs testing system imposed on Russia following revelations of widespread doping is inefficient and the country must be part of the decision-making process to battle the problem, Russia's outgoing Olympic Committee (ROC) chief has said.
Alexander Zhukov said in a speech released on Wednesday that while doping was a problem in Russia there was no such thing as a state-backed doping system, which the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) said it had uncovered in the country.
"There is no state-supported doping program in sport in Russia and it has never existed," Zhukov told the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in Lausanne.
The WADA-commissioned reports, including one by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren, revealed widespread state-sponsored doping in Russian sport.
WADA also alleged that Russian testers had helped local athletes at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics by changing drugs-tainted samples for clean ones with the aid of the secret service to give their competitors an advantage.
The results triggered a ban on all but one Russian track and field athlete at the Rio de Janeiro Games in August and widespread calls for a blanket ban on all athletes until the country could prove it had a clean drug-testing system.
Zhukov said Russia needed a stronger presence within WADA and that the suspended anti-doping authority RUSADA had to be in charge of testing again.
WADA wanted a blanket ban on Russian athletes in Rio but the IOC allowed more than 270 Russians to compete at the Games. Continued...