WADA Welcomes Russian Informant Stepanova's Clearance to Compete

© AP Photo / Aleksander Chernykh, FileYulia Stepanova poses in an undisclosed location
Yulia Stepanova poses in an undisclosed location - Sputnik International
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) welcomed the international athletics federation’s decision Friday to allow Russian runner and WADA informant Yulia Stepanova to compete in international competitions, including next month’s Olympics in Rio.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – The International Association of Athletics Federations’ (IAAF) Doping Review Board unanimously accepted Stepanova's request to compete as an independent neutral athlete, saying she had made a "truly exceptional contribution to the protection and promotion of clean athletes."

"WADA pleased with IAAF Doping Board’s decision to allow Yuliya Stepanova to compete in international competition as a neutral athlete… Ms.Stepanova has clearly made a truly exceptional contribution to protection of clean athletes, and so we fully support the decision," WADA said on Twitter.

Yulia Stepanova poses in an undisclosed location - Sputnik International
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It acknowledged that the whistleblower’s participation as a neutral athlete was still subject to individual competition rules passed by event organizers, but said it looked forward to see Stepanova in a new capacity.

Russian runner Stepanova revealed information about alleged doping abuse and corruption in Russian sports in the Germany television broadcaster ARD's film titled "The Doping Secret: How Russia Creates Champions," released in December 2014. Stepanova and her husband have left Russia and sought political asylum in Canada.

In November 2015, the WADA Independent Commission presented a report accusing Russia of numerous breaches of global anti-doping regulations and recommended the country be banned from international athletics competitions. Subsequently, the IAAF temporary suspended the Russian Athletic Federation's membership of the association.

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