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World Doping Experts Conducting Follow-Up Audit Of Russian Agency

Margarita Pakhnotskaya, deputy director-general of RUSADA: "The auditors can point to flaws in our work, if there are any."

World anti-doping experts are in Moscow conducting a follow-up audit of the Russian anti-doping agency (RUSADA) after conditionally reinstating it earlier this year.

The visit by the inspectors, being held December 11-12, comes as Russian sports continue to be shadowed by doubts about the government’s anti-doping efforts.

Those doubts stem from revelations of a widespread, government-orchestrated doping scheme during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

Russia has accepted that doping has been widespread, but authorities in Moscow continue to deny any of it was state-sponsored.

"The audit will be held over two days, as was previously planned. And the auditors can point to flaws in our work, if there are any," RUSADA Deputy Director-General Margarita Pakhnotskaya was quoted by the state news agency TASS as saying. "We will take all comments into consideration immediately."

In September, the World Anti-Doping Agency, known as WADA, reinstated Russia in a controversial decision that was made on condition that Moscow recognize the findings of its report and allow access to the test samples stored by the Russia national agency, called RUSADA.

WADA has warned that failure to provide access to all of the data from RUSADA’s Moscow lab by the end of 2018 could lead to another suspension.

WADA experts were given access to the Moscow drug-testing laboratory for the first time last week.

Earlier this month, the world governing body for track and field, the IAAF, upheld a 2015 ban imposed against Russia over widespread state-sponsored doping until Russia meets key conditions.

With reporting by Reuters and TASS
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