WADA Report Accuses Russian Ministry, FSB of Doping Сoverup at Sochi Games

© Sputnik / Valeriy Melnikov / Go to the mediabankDoping laboratory. File photo
Doping laboratory. File photo - Sputnik International
World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) report released on Monday claimed that the Russian Sports Ministry and Federal Security Service (FSB) have manipulated the results of Russian athletes' doping samples in the run up and during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — According to the report, Russia's Sochi anti-doping Laboratory also employed a unique method to swap athletes' doping sample in order to enable doped Russian athletes to compete in the Sochi Olympics.

"The Ministry of Sport directed, controlled and oversaw the manipulation of athlete’s analytical results or sample swapping, with the active participation and assistance of the FSB, CSP [Center of Sports Preparation of National Teams of Russia], and both Moscow and Sochi Laboratories," the report, carried out by Richard McLaren, said.

Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) ran the country's alleged athletes' doping sample swapping system during a number of international competitions between 2013-2014, the report claimed.

"The FSB role is not interference and control, like that of the Deputy Minister of Sport, but assistance in arranging and operating the State sponsored system of sample swapping that occurred in connection with: the 2013 University Games and IAAF Championships, the Sochi laboratory and in the lead up to the WADA seizure of samples in December 2014," the report, carried out by Richard McLaren, said.

Russian parlamentarian Dmitry Svischev said that the McLAren report did not present any evidence while claiming that Russian officials had been allegedly behind the doping coverup.

The report also claimed that Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko knew of the doping coverup.

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The WADA report said on Monday that former director of the Russia-based anti-doping laboratory Grigory Rodchenkov was a "credible and truthful person."

In May, US media reported, citing Rodchenkov, that dozens of Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, including at least 15 medal winners, were using doping throughout the Games as part of a "state-run program." WADA has launched a probe into the claims under the lead of Richard McLaren who has already investigated reports of Russian athletes using doping.

"Dr. Rodchenkov, in the context of the subject matter within the IP [individual person] mandate, was a credible and truthful person," the report, carried out by McLaren, said.

"Disappearing Positive Methodology was planned and operated over a period from at least late 2011 until August 2015… Russian athletes from the vast majority of summer and winter Olympic sports benefited from the Disappearing Positive Methodology," the report said.

"Dr. Rodchenkov’s evidence is that, in several of his regular meetings with [Russian] Deputy [Sports] Minister [Yury] Nagornykh to discuss the cover up scheme, Deputy Minister Nagornykh told him that Minister of Sport Mutko was aware of everything that they were discussing. Dr. Rodchenkov’s evidence is that it is inconceivable that Minister Mutko was not aware of the doping cover up scheme," the report said.

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According to the report, the Disappearing Positive Methodology was the system developed by Moscow anti-doping laboratory in cooperation with the Russian Ministry of Sport, which ensured that if any doped high-performing athlete was not protected by different means during the collection or transportation of doping samples, the result would be covered in the laboratory.

A laboratory in Moscow protected Russian athletes who were using doping and participated at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Richard McLaren, appointed by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to head an investigation into alleged doping abuse at the Sochi Games said Monday.

"The Moscow laboratory operated for the protection of doped Russian athletes within a state-directed fail-safe system, which we describe in a report as the disappearing positive methodology," McLaren told reporters.

"The Sochi laboratory operated a unique sample-swapping methodology to enable doped Russian athletes to compete at the Winter Olympic Games," he added.

"The Russian Ministry of Sport directed, controlled and oversaw the manipulation of athletes' analytical results or sample-swapping and the act of participation and assistance of the FSB [Federal Security Service]… and both Moscow and Sochi laboratories," McLaren said.

"In essence, the disappearing positive methodology allowed transformation of positive analytical results into a negative one by an order from a deputy minister of sport, that the operational analytical processes of the Moscow laboratory be altered," McLaren added.

The caps of bottles containing urine samples of the Russian athletes participating in the Olympic Games in Sochi were removed and reused, the report claimed. 

"In total, over the period 2012-2015, the IP found the Disappearing Positive Methodology used on 643 positive samples," the report added.

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