Photo: Ria Novosti / Alexei Druzhinin / Agence France-Presse
The Russian president, Vladimir Putin
Before the risk of a possible exclusion of the olympic winter Games, the sports scene Russian turned into a real basket of crabs.
The doping investigations have not encouraged the Russian athletes to speak up about abuse. Instead, there is a hunt for whistle-blowers, or ” traitors to the fatherland “, as qualified as the president of federation of cross-country skiing, Yelena Välbe.
During this time, the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, has claimed that the international olympic Committee — which will make a final decision on the eligibility of the Russian federation — is being manipulated by obscure american interests that want to use the doping scandals to dishonour his government before elections in march.
Before the decision of the IOC, the Russian leaders are invited for two days of meetings of the world anti-doping Agency (WADA) this week, which will help to determine the future olympic Russia.
Officially, the topic on the table is the status of the Russian agency anti-doping, not the participation of the olympic games.
The AMA has restored most of the main powers of the Russian agency in June and will decide this week whether it should back fully. The point of disagreement does not relate to the performance of the agency, but the reluctance of the Russian government and sports organizations to accept all responsibility for what WADA considers a comprehensive programme of doping and cover-ups, including the olympic Games of 2014 in Sochi.
As the government funds the RUSADA and the sporting bodies are represented on the board of directors, they must convince the AMA that they are worthy of trust.
The AMA deals with its summit from a position of strength after having revealed Friday that she now has what she believes to be the basis of the data of the results of the tests in the anti-doping laboratory in Moscow for 2012-2015, a period where the alleged system of concealment was at its strongest.
This could confirm the earlier revelations of the whistleblower, or lead to more cases against athletes.
The two main applications of the AMA are that Russia accepts the conclusions of the report of its investigator, Richard McLaren, last year, and that it releases a lot of urine samples seized at the laboratory in Moscow.
Russia has refused to do so. “It is impossible to agree with [the report] because the report contains many contradictions,” said the minister of Sport, Pavel Kolobkov, adding that it would be “difficult for us to” convince the AMA to return to the Russian agency.
Last year, Russia has criticized the AMA, but she remained on good terms with the IOC, which was excluded, the exclusion of the olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro and has entrusted the decision to the federations of the individual. Only the athletics and weightlifting have imposed sanctions on the scale of the team. This year, the tone of Russia to the IOC is less warm.
Whistleblowers have left Russia on the basis of their personal safety, but only after being manifested. The sanctions from the IOC have triggered a witch hunt in the winter sports in russia.
A cross-country skier and a coach of biathlon have had to make statements denying having worked with the AMA after having been denounced by former colleagues.