IAAF sets out terms of Russia return to competition, including 2016 Olympics


The IAAF has laid out the criteria it expects Russia to meet before its suspension from international track and field competition -- including the 2016 Olympics -- can be lifted.

Russia was suspended last week over allegations of state-sponsored doping, with an independent commission established by the World Anti-Doping Agency having called for the All-Russia Athletic Federation to be banned.

As a result of the sanctions, Russian athletes would not be able to compete at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, but the governing body has outlined how the country could be readmitted, conceivably in time for the Games.

Measures include identifying and sanctioning anyone involved in the doping scandal, with ARAF expected to establish an "effective operational anti-doping framework".

The federation will then be required to make "structural and regulatory reforms" to deter future cases of doping, while implementing its own anti-doping testing program.

ARAF will also be required to satisfy WADA and the IAAF that everyone linked to the federation will act within the guidelines going forward, with the inspection team continuing to monitor progress.

"The verification criteria must be robust otherwise the inspection process will fail," said IAAF president Sebastian Coe. "Repeating past failings which have brought ARAF to their current position is not an option. To succeed this process must guarantee a level playing field and thereby re-establish confidence in the integrity of competition. For the protection of all clean athletes there cannot be any timeframe for ARAF's return until we are assured all criteria have been fully met and will continue to be met forever."

The criteria will be presented to the IAAF Council next week before WADA is consulted.

The inspection process is expected to begin Jan. 1, with the first report due back to the IAAF Council on March 27.

The timing of the IAAF inspection team's report in late March means Russia's national track team will miss the world indoor championships March 17-20 in Portland, Ore.