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Russian athletics body given 5-month extension for anti-doping plan

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PARIS, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) — Athletics’ world governing body on Saturday said it had given a five-month extension to the Russian Athletics Federation (RUSAF) to produce a detailed and appropriate plan to fight doping and be reinstated.

According to the World Athletics, its council has granted an extension to the deadline for the RUSAF’s Reinstatement Commission to finalize its reinstatement plan, because its Russian Taskforce believes “RUSAF currently does not have the resources available to produce a detailed and appropriate plan for reinstatement”.

The original deadline was September 30, 2020, and now the deadline has been extended to March 1, 2021.

RUSAF has been suspended since November 2015 after the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) found evidence of wide-ranging doping practices. The RUSAF Reinstatement Commission provided a draft plan by the deadline of August 31, 2020, which the World Athletics said was “better than what has come before,” but was still “seriously deficient”, so it was setting the new deadline.

“The ANA (Authorized Neutral Athlete) process for 2021 will be reviewed and discussed against the progress of the plan at the December Council meeting,” said World Athletics president Sebastian Coe. “The Taskforce believes that the international experts will be very well-equipped to help RUSAF’s Reinstatement Commission complete the plan in a matter of two or three months, but they recommended a long-stop deadline of 1 March 2021.”

But Coe also warned: “If an adequate plan is not completed by then, the Council will once again consider the matter of RUSAF’s expulsion.” Enditem

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