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WADA official: report on Russian doping could lead to «strong» action By Stefan Tabeling, dpa

Europe
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London (dpa) - A "strong decision" will be needed if claims of a state doping programme during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi prove to be true, a senior World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) official told dpa.

WADA‘s incoming director general, Olivier Niggli, said it would mean that possibly all sport in Russia was affected.

This could in turn lead to the possibility of a suspension for all Russian sport, and not just athletics.

WADA has apppointed a team under independent investigator Professor Richard McLaren to probe allegations of doping samples being manipulated at Sochi.

WADA last week also issued further allegations to existing charges of systematic doping and cover-ups of positive doping tests in Russia.

Ruling athletics body IAAF decided Friday to prolong the suspension of the Russian athletics federation, keeping Russia out of the August 5-21 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Niggli said further action would depend on the outcome of the McLaren investigation report, which is expected next month.

If this shows there was proof of state-organized doping at Sochi it could "possible mean all sport is affected."

He added: "This will require a strong decision, not only from WADA but from everyone."

Despite all efforts to combat doping, there was little anti-doping bodies could do if it was state-organized.

"We have to be realistic. Russia has to completely rebuild its system," he said.

Niggli, a Canadian who assumes the role of WADA director general on July 1 after working as chief operating officer, said other problem nations such as Kenya and Mexico were in a different position to Russia.

Both these nations were "not conform" for failing to adhere to anti-doping compliance regulations.

"If they implement these they will then again be in WADA‘s compliance programme," he said.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) began an Olympic summit at its headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland on Tuesday which is discussing anti-doping measures and ways of protecting clean athletes ahead of the Rio Games.

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