Russian Olympic Committee calls for 'full investigation' into doping allegations


The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) has called for a more complete investigation into allegations of doping cover-ups made in a damning report amid calls for a blanket ban on athletes from the European nation competing at the Rio Games.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) on Monday called for Russia to be banned from the upcoming Olympic and Paralympic Games after an independent investigation found a state-dictated system in the country had protected doped athletes.

Professor Richard McLaren was appointed by WADA to investigate claims of Russian state manipulation of the doping control process, which were made by the former director of the WADA-accredited laboratory in Moscow, Dr Grigory Rodchenkov.

McLaren presented his findings in Toronto on Monday, concluding that Russia's government, security services and sporting authorities colluded to hide doping across a range of sports.

The executive board of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) will meet on Tuesday to discuss the possibility of imposing "provisional measures and sanctions" on Russia relating to next month's Rio Games.

Russian track and field athletes have already been banned from representing their country in Brazil and the (ROC) does not believe a blanket would be the right course of action.

An ROC statement said: "The charges, which were put forward in the report by Richard McLaren against Russian sport, are so serious as to require a full investigation with the participation of all parties involved.

"As a supporter of the fight against doping with zero tolerance position, the Olympic Committee of Russia is ready to provide full assistance in this, communicate, where appropriate, with any international organisations.

"However, we fundamentally disagree with Mr McLaren's opinion which believes that a possible dismissal of hundreds of pure Russian athletes to participate in the Olympic Games is a valid "unpleasant consequences" set out in the Commission's report charges.

"Charges that are currently being built in the first place, on the statements of Gregory Rodchenkova.

"And only based on human evidence, which is located in the centre he created the criminal scheme, endangers not only the career and the fate of many honest athletes, but also the integrity of the international Olympic movement.

"Russia fought at the state level and will continue to fight against doping, constantly toughen the penalties for committed in this region illegal activity, putting the principle of inevitability of punishment.

"Russian Olympic Committee fully supports the use of the most severe measures against those who use illegal drugs, or inclines to their use. At the same time, building its activities in full compliance with the Olympic Charter, the ROC will always protect the rights of clean athletes.

"Those who throughout their careers, thanks to persistent training, talent and willpower strives to realize his Olympic dream, do not have to depend on unfounded, unsubstantiated accusations and criminal acts of individuals. This is our principled position."