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Russian Anti-Doping Agency Urges Putin To Release Data

RUSADA Director Yuri Ganus
RUSADA Director Yuri Ganus

The head of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) has appealed to President Vladimir Putin for help in getting key doping data released to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to prevent Russia from once again being ostracized in global sports.

WADA reinstated the suspended RUSADA in September, but it will lose its status again unless Russia's Investigative Committee, which is holding the data for its own probe, hands it over to WADA inspectors by the end of the year.

In a video address to Putin on December 27, RUSADA Director Yury Ganus said a new suspension could badly damage Russian sport.

"We're standing on the edge of the abyss, and I'm asking you to protect the present and the future of our clean sports, the current and future generations of athletes," Ganus said.

WADA officials said last week that they left Russia empty-handed after authorities denied the promised access to data from Moscow's anti-doping laboratory.

The data could help confirm violations uncovered during an investigation that revealed a state-sponsored doping program in Russia, designed to win medals at the 2014 Olympics and other major events.

Moscow denies any state-sponsored doping, although it has acknowledged some shortcomings in its enforcement of anti-doping regulations.

Russia was barred from this year's Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, after WADA found evidence of an extensive cover-up of state-sponsored doping at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters