WADA: Ban Russia until 'culture change' achieved

Doping (File)
Doping (File)

Montreal - The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) called for Russia to be banned from the Rio Olympics on Monday and urged global sports governing bodies to bar Russia until "culture change" is achieved.

The move comes after the release of a WADA-requested report by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren that says Russia used a complex state-supported doping scheme at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

"WADA calls on Sport Movement to deny Russian athletes participation at international comp including Rio until 'culture change' achieved," WADA spokesman Ben Nichols tweeted.

"WADA: doping scheme across 30 sports mean there can no longer be presumption of innocence. Russian doping control system called into question."

McLaren found that Russia's secret service and top sports ministry officials -- as well as those responsible for preparing Russian athletes -- made some positive samples vanish and switched clean samples for doping-tainted ones at other times during the Winter Games in Russia.

It comes just a fortnight before the opening ceremony of the Rio Olympics, a Games that Russian athletics competitors are already banned from based on earlier decisions by the IAAF.

The McLaren probe "reveals most deliberate and disturbing abuse of power ever seen in sport," WADA said through a Nichols tweet, calling the scheme "totally unacceptable."

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