For Russian President Vladimir Putin, the Russian doping scandal, which has been ongoing for years, emphasizes that athletes from his country can return to the Russian flag as soon as possible. The athletes are making an effort to ensure that "deficiencies in anti-doping issues are a thing of the past," Putin said at the sports conference organized by the Russian Ministry of Sport "Russia – a sports power" in Nizhny Novgorod.
It is about "that they can participate again on an equal footing, show their abilities without restrictions and serve as role models for professionals and athletes – especially for young athletes".
Putin is personally involved in the discussion about the credibility of the Russian anti-doping agency Rusada. "We are very actively cooperating with the World Anti-Doping Agency," he said. "The requirements of the Wada are being met in full." Because of the scandal over state doping Russian teams were last allowed to compete in some major events. At the World Athletics Championships in Qatar, 30 athletes started under a neutral flag.
However, the Wada doubts the authenticity of the data from the Moscow Doping Control Laboratory, which should prove the extent of the state-controlled doping program in the period from 2012 to 2015. Specifically, positive doping tests are said to have been erased or manipulated, according to Jonathan Taylor, the chairman of the Wada Panel. Rusada boss Jurij Ganus supported this thesis in a SPIEGEL interview: "It's not about deleting entire data packages, but changing or moving them in different places," said Ganus.
The transfer of data from the laboratory information and management system (LIMS) of the Moscow laboratory was a prerequisite for the resumption of the Rusada in the Wada. This includes the test data between January 2012 and August 2015, during which time systematic tests have been systematically covered up in the Moscow laboratory.
Until the relevant Wada committee meets on October 23, Russia must explain the abnormalities satisfactorily. The Wada had warned in advance to take "the strictest sanctions," if it turns out that the data had been manipulated. As another person with knowledge of the process confirmed the SPIEGEL, the Wada is currently pursuing the new suspicions.