LOS ANGELES • The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) is considering a ban on countries whose athletes dope regularly, according to its president Craig Reedie.
He told CNN that such a deterrent could be "a pretty blunt instrument" in the war on drugs but was waiting for a report from his independent commission before deciding whether to push forward with the strategy.
The International Association of Athletics Federations has come under fire for not following up on suspicious test results from more than 800 athletes between 2001 and 2012, based on an investigation by Britain's Sunday Times and German broadcaster ARD/WDR.
"The fact that this is being discussed as a potential sanction is not entirely unhelpful," said Reedie, 74, who told CNN about implementing a blanket ban on countries with offending athletes.
"It's a very, very serious sanction because it tends to be a pretty blunt instrument.
"Maybe that's required."
He said no country had been banned from a multi-category competition such as the Olympics over an offending athlete but that there was a precedent for nations being suspended by the ruling body in an individual sport.
"The sport has turned around and said, 'At the moment, your record isn't good enough so we don't want you coming to our events for a period of years'," Reedie explained. "It's happened very infrequently but I think it's been effective."