ROC statement regarding the hearings at CAS

Based on the results of the hearings in the case between the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA), which were held in the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) for 4 days, the Russian Olympic Committee, which participated in the process as a third party, rightly expects an impartial and fair decision from the three-judge CAS Arbitral Panel.

The ROC’s position on all issues within the competence of the organization was communicated to all participants and the Arbitral Panel in a clear, convincing manner. The ROC’s position is based on strict adherence to the norms of the law and the relevant experience of world sport, as well as public and private legal practices.

This concerns the subject of the proceedings and the collective sanctions proposed against Russian athletes, all Russian sport and numerous officials, which were recommended by WADA’s Compliance Review Committee (CRC) and approved by the WADA Executive Committee.

Stanislav Pozdnyakov, President of the Russian Olympic Committee:

We are satisfied with how detailed and persuasive the position of the Russian Olympic Committee was. We are pleased with the results of this stage of our joint work with lawyers and attorneys representing our interests. We are waiting for a fair and comprehensive solution from CAS. I will only add that, thanks to the closed format of the hearings, the judges will be able to avoid unnecessary pressure, look at facts from a purely legal aspect, and not react to all kinds of information or provocations from (foreign) opponents. All further comments will be possible based on the final decision by CAS and the clarification of each point. We are always committed to the fact that justice must prevail. Punishment must be inevitable for any violator, but it must be applied in the form of individual sanctions based on solid evidence.

In early 2020, WADA filed a formal notice of dispute with CAS since the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) did not agree with the sanctions proposed by WADA, revoking its compliance status and declaring it in violation of the World Anti-Doping Code.

As a result, WADA brought the case before CAS to justify the legality and validity of revoking RUSADA’s compliance status, along with a range of consequences attached for athletes and Russian sport.

According to the World Anti-Doping Code, such disputes, if they arise, must be resolved at the Court of Arbitration for Sport. WADA is the plaintiff in this process, while RUSADA is the defendant. Organizations and individuals whose interests could be affected by the proposed sanctions and their consequences joined the hearings as third parties. These include the IOC, ROC, RPC and FHR.

The hearings were conducted by the CAS Arbitral Panel comprised of Chairman Mark Williams (Australia), Professor Luigi Fumagalli (Italy) and Dr. Hamid Gharavi (France/Iran). Due to the restrictions associated with the coronavirus pandemic, proceedings went ahead in a mixed format with the participation of judges, parties, representatives, experts and witnesses joining via videolink but some appearing in-person in Lausanne (Switzerland).

According to a notification by CAS to all interested parties, the CAS Arbitration Division should announce its verdict at a later time, most likely before the end of this year.