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Second McLaren report suggests institutional doping cover-up

Reporter: Julia Lyubova 丨 CCTV.com

12-10-2016 15:53 BJT

The latest findings in a report implicates a massive doping ring in Russia, that may have involved 1,000 athletes. That is what was uncovered in a second report, released by the World Anti-Doping Agency. Russia is denying these findings, that implicates they had athletes in more than 30 sports across the Summer and Winter Olympics benefit from alleged doping.

On the eve of the release of the second part of the McLaren report, Russia's sports officials gathered to praise the country's Olympic achievements. But the report found that more than 1,000 Russians, including Olympic medallists, benefited from a state-endorsed doping program between 2011 and 2015. Moscow denies the existence of such program.

"Of course we do not agree with the statements that there allegedly was a state-sponsored doping support system, this is not true. There has never been such a system in Russia," said Alexander Zhukov, head of Russia's Olympic Committee.

The report's author, Lawyer Richard McLaren, who was commissioned by the World Anti Doping Agency to investigate said there was a systematic cover-up, which was refined at the 2012 Olympics, 2013 world athletics championships and 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games. More than 30 sports, including football, were involved in concealing positive doping samples.

"A comprehensive strategy was designed to ensure that Russia, the host country, would win as many medals as possible by allowing the elite medal-contending athletes to dope up and possibly in some cases through the Games. This is the apex of the Russian move from uncontrolled chaos, to an institutionalised, disciplined, medal-winning strategy and conspiracy," said McLaren.

The first part of the McLaren report was published in July 2016. It was just ahead of the Rio Olympic Games. The Russian National Team narrowly escaped being banned from the entire competition.

Russia has promised to re-shake its anti-doping system and says it has complied with all requests by WADA. Several measures were brought in, including making doping a criminal offence. The Russian Anti-Doping Agency has been given independent financing and Moscow says it is now fully transparent.

"This could be a chance to start clean because all athletes, none named, who have been part of the, who are alleged to have cheated, will have a chance to answer their case before the IOC," said sports analyst Alan Moore.

Earlier this week, the International Olympic Committee extended the sanctions imposed on Russia. Russian track and field athletes remain banned from all international competitions. And Russia's participation in the 2018 Winter Olympics could still be in jeopardy.

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