IOC must redeem itself for 2018 after Rio fail, says iNADO

Thu Oct 6, 2016 10:04am EDT
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LONDON (Reuters) - The International Olympic Committee (IOC) lost the anti-doping battle at Rio but can redeem itself in time for the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games, anti-doping officials said on Thursday.

The 59-member global Institute of National Anti-Doping Organisations (iNADO) said in a strongly-worded statement that the IOC had "failed the clean athletes of the world" at the Summer Games in August.

The IOC resisted calls for a blanket ban on Russians competing in the Games due to the country's doping record, leaving decisions on individual athletes' participation with their sports federations.

Last month's Paralympics did ban all Russian athletes.

"Sadly for sport, just as the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games are remembered by (Canadian sprinter) Ben Johnson’s infamy, this year’s Games will be remembered by participation of athletes served by a Russian system that corrupted clean sport," iNADO said.

"Equally disappointing, in the eyes of many the IOC chose to associate itself with such a system by failing to reject it categorically."

Joseph de Pencier, chief executive of iNADO, said the IOC must ensure that "the reception of Russian athletes in Pyeongchang is very different than the one in Rio."

iNADO said a starting point would be for the IOC to recognize that the findings of the McLaren report, which revealed the system of state-sponsored doping in Russia, were well-documented and reliable.

Another would be for individual IOC members to cease attacks on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) that commissioned the report.   Continued...

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach gestures during an interview with Reuters at the IOC headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, September 16, 2015.  REUTERS/Denis Balibouse