Wed, 19 Jun 2019

The whistle-blower who helped expose Russia's state-run sports doping program warned regulators against reinstating the Russian oversight agency.

Grigory Rodchenkov made the statement in an op-ed article in the newspaper USA Today September 18, two days before the World Anti-Doping Agency meets to consider the reinstatement.

The world agency, known as WADA, 'must not fall prey to manipulation and false assertions from the Ministry (of Sport), the same arm of the Kremlin that facilitated the doping program and asserted false compliance,' Rodchenkov wrote in the editorial.

'To do so, would be nothing short of a catastrophe for clean sport,' he wrote.

Rodchenkov's revelations about state-run doping during the 2014 Sochi Olympics led to many Russian athletes being stripped of medals.

It also led to WADA stripping the Russian agency, known as RUSADA, from its authorized role in monitoring doping compliance by Russian sportsmen and women.

WADA is now reportedly accepting Russia's willingness to agree with a report commissioned by the International Olympic Committee. That report doesn't focus as heavily on the government's role in the cheating.

The United States Anti-Doping Agency has also been scathing of the prospect of Russia being readmitted this week.

Rodchenkov, who was one of the architects of the elaborate doping and cheating system, currently lives in the United States, under law enforcement protection, fearing death threats.

Based on reporting by USA Today, AP

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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