Russia has been handed a four-year ban from major sporting events after the Executive Committee of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) approved sanctions on Monday.
Meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland, the 12-member WADA Executive Committee passed measures against Russia earlier recommended by the organization’s Compliance Committee, the head of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA), Yuri Ganus, confirmed.
The move comes after Russia is alleged to have manipulated data provided to WADA from a Moscow anti-doping laboratory in January.
The data was handed over as part of the reinstatement terms for RUSADA after a three-year exile over claims of state-sponsored doping, which Russia has consistently denied.
RUSADA was again declared non-compliant on Monday and will be suspended for a four-year period, meaning the Russian flag will not fly at the next two Olympic Games as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is a signatory to the WADA Code.
However, Russian athletes not implicated in any doping accusations will be free to compete as neutrals, meaning the country has avoided the ‘blanket ban’ called for in some quarters.