Statement of the Russian Olympic Committee

The Russian Olympic Committee has familiarize itself with the round table materials dedicated to the consequences of Professor Richard McLaren report which took place on April 26, 2017 in the Bundestag, including the statement of Ms. Dagmar Freitag, the chairperson of the Bundestag Sports Committee, which she made after the round table.

In particular, Ms. Freitag said that Russia should not be allowed to participate in the 2018 Olympic Games due to the fact that, in her opinion, it “does not sufficiently recognize the wrongfulness of what it did”.

In response to the call of the official representative of the German parliament to ban the Russian athletes from participating in the Olympic Games, the Russian Olympic Committee feels it necessary to declare the following.

One of the fundamental principles of the Olympism is the autonomy and independence of sports organizations from any outside influence and inadmissibility of the governmental interference in the activities of the participants of the Olympic movement, which was reflected in the UN General Assembly resolution dated October 16, 2014.

In this respect the ROC considers such statements as gross violation of the principles laid down by the Olympic Charter and the UN and is extremely concerned by the attempts of the German parliamentarians to bring pressure on the International Olympic Committee to force it to ban the Russian athletes from the participation in the XXIII winter Olympic Games in 2018.

We believe that such declarations shatter the integrity of the international Olympic movement and are aimed at disrupting the processes which are currently carried out pursuant to the IOC Olympic Charter.

We have never denied the presence of certain doping-related problems.

The President of the Russian Federation Mr. Vladimir Putin clearly stated that there were some proved cases of doping use by the athletes and that the anti-doping system in Russia failed in some cases.

Also we would like to stress that the state-sponsored doping system, which our German colleagues are trying to accuse us of, never existed in Russia.

At the same time the Russian Olympic Committee feels it necessary to note that the Russian Federation has been investing enormous efforts to fight against doping in sport.

To change the situation for the better, the Independent Public Anti-doping Commission chaired by the veteran of the international Olympic movement Mr. Vitaly Smirnov was set up in June 2016.

There were some changes made to the Russian legislation in part of introducing criminal charges for those who solicit the athletes to use doping as well as ensuring the operational and financial independence of the All-Russian Anti-Doping Agency RUSADA.

From 2016 on, all Russian athletes are under the total surveillance of the foreign anti-doping organizations. The British anti-doping agency makes testing plans, the Swedish and German authorized organizations take samples, and the leading international anti-doping laboratories, including the German one, analyze the samples.

Within the stated period, only one-off cases of doping abuse by Russian athletes were identified, and the respective statistics proves that at present the per cent of identified doping cases in Russia is clearly lower than in some leading global sports nations.

We are also astonished by a similar statement made by the head of the German Olympic Sports Confederation Mr. Alfons Hormann who said that the Russian athletes should skip the coming Olympic Games while most of our colleagues from other National Olympic Committees do not support such groundless and discriminating calls and wish to see the Russian athletes on the global sports arenas, which, of course, makes us happy.

The Russian Olympic Committee believes that the collective punishment of all the athletes from a certain country is inadmissible and contradicts both the legal and ethical aspects of the international law and the Olympic movement.

Only those athletes (irrespective of their nationality) who were caught in violating the doping rules and on condition of sufficient evidence and the decision of a competent sports authority, are subject to punishment.

It would be appropriate to recall that at the end of the 80-ies and beginning of the 90-ies Germany suffered the major scandal in this area which ended with high-profile exposures. We may also recall other major doping scandals which happened in different countries all over the world.

However, nobody ever called to ban all the German or other athletes from any country from Olympic Games. And it was totally fair towards those athletes who were not involved in the above scandals.

We believe that the fair and equal approach shall be applied to all the athletes without any exceptions irrespective of their nationality. The policy of “selectivity” and “double standards” has always been destructive.

In conclusion, the Russian Olympic Committee would like to stress that over the last two years Russia has made tremendous efforts to root out doping – the problem which is actual for the international sport. We are sure that in cooperation with the WADA and the IOC we will manage to build the most efficient anti-doping system in the world in the nearest future. And we have always advocated and will advocate for the rights of clean athletes to participate in all international competitions, including the Olympic Games.

This Statement was sent to the Bundestag of German Federal Republic,German Olympic Sports Bund,the International Olympic Committee(IOC) and World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).