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Anti-Doping Agency Questions Decision On Letting Russians In Olympics

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has come out against the International Olympic Committee's decision this week to allow Russian athletes who are drug-free to compete under their own flag in Rio.

WADA President Craig Reedie's statement on June 22 questioning the committee's decision further scrambled the differing positions of the world's leading sporting organizations on the Russian doping scandal.

On June 17, the International Association of Athletics Federations barred the Russian track-and-field team from competing at the Rio games in August. It changed its rules to allow a small number of Russian athletes to participate under an independent flag, providing they could show they were subject to doping controls outside Russia.

But on June 21, the Olympic committee countered that decision in part, saying Russian athletes who are proven drug-free have no choice but to compete as part of Russia's Olympic Committee.

Reedie's statement on June 22 said the federations' approach was the correct one.

"Until the required cultural change in Russia is well-advanced through strong education and prevention programs, supported by independent doping control and robust compliance programs, WADA cannot assure clean athletes of the world that it is reforming," Reedie said.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP

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