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Russian doping's first casualty

July 19, 2016 09:49 IST

Russian PM suspends sports ministry official named in doping report

Yury Nagornykh

IMAGE: Russian Deputy Sports Minister Yury Nagornykh, left, and cross-country skier Alexander Legkov attend a news conference after rejecting claims that Russian athletes who competed at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics were part of a state-run doping program, in Moscow, Russia, May 13, 2016. Photograph: Sergei Karpukhin/Reuters.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has suspended Deputy Sports Minister Yury Nagornykh, who was named in a report on the doping of Russian athletes at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, the government said on Monday.

President Vladimir Putin said earlier on Monday that Russian officials named in the World Anti-Doping Agency's report would be temporarily suspended.

The report said Nagornykh had been advised of every positive test across all sports from 2011 onwards and decided "who would benefit from a cover-up and who would not be protected.

The investigation was led by Canadian sports lawyer Richard McLaren, who sat on the independent commission that last year exposed doping and corruption in Russian track and field, leading to its exclusion from international competition.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) did not spell out whether it would heed growing calls for Olympic bans already imposed on Russia's track and field athletes and weightlifters to be extended to all its competitors in Games in Rio de Janeiro in August.

Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko was defiant, telling TASS news agency that there were no concrete confirmation of doping violations in the report.

"I hope that the IOC, while taking up a decision, will be guided by common sense and will proceed from the fact that there is no a concrete confirmation of a violation by this or that athlete in the report," he was quoted as saying.

Source:
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