You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

WADA encouraged by Putin's doping comments

Press Association logoPress Association 1/03/2017

The World Anti-doping Agency is "encouraged by this sign of progress" after president Vladimir Putin admitted Russia's anti-doping system had "failed" and urged it to reform.

The WADA-commissioned McLaren investigation in July 2016 confirmed "institutionalised manipulation of the doping control process in Russia" and a second instalment last December "reconfirmed manipulation and focused on the number of athletes that may have benefited", the global anti-doping body said.

Putin - quoted by Russia Today - said at a meeting in 2019 World Student Games host city Krasnoyarsk: "The main thing is that, despite the shortcomings in the work of (McLaren's) independent commission, we should pay attention to what it did, to the results of its work.

"We must listen to WADA's demands. Because we have to admit that we have proven cases of doping use.

"This is absolutely unacceptable and it means that the Russian anti-doping system failed, and it's our fault - we should spell it out and admit it."

Putin refuted the allegations of state-sponsored doping though.

"In Russia, there has never been and, I hope, will never be a state doping support system; on the contrary, there will only be anti-doping action," he said.

"I'm counting on the investigative committee to see the probe through to the end, and to expose everyone guilty."

WADA issued a statement in response to Putin's comments.

"WADA is encouraged by this sign of progress from the highest political levels in Russia today," WADA president Craig Reedie said.

"This public admission by Russian president Vladimir Putin that their 'anti-doping system has failed' is an important step in the right direction."

RUSADA, Russia's national anti-doping agency, was declared "non-compliant" in November 2015 following an independent report, led by former WADA president Dick Pound, which uncovered widespread doping in Russian athletics.

Its track and field athletes were banned from the Rio Olympics by the IAAF, athletics' world governing body, while the International Paralympic Committee banned Russia entirely from the Rio Paralympics following the revelations in the McLaren report.

More From Press Association

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon