(ATR) International Biathlon Union President Olle Dahlin says if the Russian Biathlon Union does not fulfill reinstatement criteria it “cannot be a full member” of the federation.
Biathletes compete on a snowy night in PyeongChang (ATR)
Dahlin visited Russia today to meet with the RBU, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) and the Russian Olympic Committee to discuss criteria for the RBU’s reinstatement as a full member.
The criteria include a “future testing program of Russian biathletes, the reimbursement of costs, setting up a special doping prevention program, mandatory anti-doping education, access to the Moscow LIMS data, and full cooperation with investigations into potential past anti-doping rule violations (ADRVs),” according to the IBU.
Russia was relegated to being a provisional member of the IBU in December 2017, a status that was originally supposed to apply for only the 2017-18 season. That meant that Russians could take part in IBU events, but would not have a vote in the federation.
Then, Austrian and Norwegian authorities raided the IBU in April 2018, investigating links between then president Anders Besseberg and secretary general Nicole Resch and cover ups related to doping tests of Russian athletes. Besseberg and Resch stepped aside from the IBU pending the investigation. Dahlin was elected President at the federation’s 2018 Congress in September, when the IBU also voted against giving the RBU full membership.
On a conference call with reporters Dahlin said that there is no explicit timeline for Russia to comply with the criteria. The World Anti-Doping Agency has also required access to the LIMS data from the Moscow lab, but has given RUSADA until the end of the year to comply.
“That’s the interest of the RBU, if they want to be full members. I don’t want to speculate how fast they will do their homework now,” Dahlin said to reporters when pressed about the lack of explicit timelines.
“They need to complete the criteria to be full members. If they don’t do it, it can take a long time to be a full member. If they don’t fulfill the criteria they cannot be a full member.”
Dahlin said that Russia acknowledged receiving the criteria, but “haven’t commented on anything about the criteria”. He said he would not speculate if there would be any compromises to the requirements, like some have suggested the WADA Compliance and Review Committee did with RUSADA.
The IBU will set up a working group comprising federation representatives, the RBU, and RUSADA. The working group will meet for the first time “before Christmas,” Dahlin said, and then will discuss implementing the criteria needed for full reinstatement.
Written by Aaron Bauer
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