Doping row: Russia’s sports minister says IAAF should be disbanded

  • Reuters, Moscow
  • Updated: Jun 19, 2016 20:04 IST
Journalists are seen near a logo of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) at a hotel where the IAAF council holds a meeting in Vienna, Austria. (Reuters Photo)

Russia’s sports minister Vitaly Mutko said on Sunday the world athletics governing body, the IAAF, has unfairly shifted blame for the doping scandal onto Russia’s athletics federation and should be disbanded, R-Sport news agency reported.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Saturday backed the IAAF’s decision to extend its ban on Russia for systematic doping, ending any slim hopes that Russian athletes might have had of competing at the Rio Games in August.

The decision is being contested by the Russian athletes -- race-walkers Denis Nizhegorodov and Svetlana Vasilyeva launched an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport over the decision to uphold the doping ban, which would bar them from competing in Rio, All Sport news agency reported.

Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko reacts during an interview in Moscow, Russia. (Reuters Photo)

The agency quoted Andrey Mitkov, a sports agent, as saying that the “class action” appeal will be delivered to the court in Lausanne on Tuesday.

IAAF president Sebastian Coe has said that Russia has made some progress in tackling the use of prohibited substances by athletes but it was “not enough” to lift the ban.

“In essence, by shifting the responsibility to the All-Russia Athletics Federation, they have exonerated themselves from responsibility. The IAAF should be disbanded,” Mutko was quoted as saying on Sunday.

The IAAF suspended Russia last year over concerns its athletes were guilty of systematic doping.

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