Athletics: Olympics committee suspends Lamine Diack, urges action on dopers

Honorary IOC member Lamine Diack is under formal investigation for corruption and money laundering.
Honorary IOC member Lamine Diack is under formal investigation for corruption and money laundering.REUTERS

BERLIN (REUTERS) - The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has provisionally suspended former IAAF president Lamine Diack and urged the ruling body of athletics to open disciplinary procedures against those found to have violated doping rules.

The IOC said competitors, coaches or officials mentioned in a World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) independent commission report on Monday who were proven to have violated doping regulations would be punished and stripped of any medals.

Diack, an honorary IOC member until Tuesday, is under formal investigation in France for corruption and money laundering.

 

The Wada commission reported allegations of widespread corruption and collusion by Russian officials, including state security services, to cover up results of drug tests, destroy samples and intimidate laboratory staff.

They also identified "systematic failures" by the IAAF governing body, already rocked by the probe against Diack and other officials.

"The IOC has asked the IAAF to initiate disciplinary procedures against all athletes, coaches and officials who have participated in the Olympic Games and are accused of doping in the report of the independent commission," it said in a statement.

"With its zero-tolerance policy against doping, following the conclusion of this procedure, the IOC will take all the necessary measures and sanctions with regard to the withdrawal and re-allocation of medals and, as the case may be, exclusion of coaches and officials from future Olympic Games."

Several Russian athletes are mentioned in the report but the true extent of the doping affair, and which sports have been affected, has yet to be established.

Wada also wants the accreditation of Russia's drugs-testing laboratory to be removed.

The IOC said the doping scandal in the country did not affect performances at the 2014 Sochi Games where Wada experts had given the thumbs up to testing procedures.

"The IOC studied the functioning of the Wada accredited laboratory in Sochi during the Olympic Winter Games 2014," it said.

"In this context, the IOC relies on the-then report of the Wada independent observer group which makes no mention of any such irregularity. Nor was any such irregularity reported by the international experts involved, nor found by the IOC itself.

"Therefore, the IOC has no reason to question the credibility of the results of the anti-doping tests carried out at the Olympic Winter Games 2014."

It did, however, say it reserved the right for any re-testing of samples as the IOC keeps them frozen for 10 years to check for new substances or fresh methods of testing.

"The IOC...will retest samples in an appropriate way should substantial doubts arise. The IOC may retest samples once new scientific techniques become available."