Members of Russian track and field team will remain banned from international competition including this year’s Rio Olympics, BBC Sport reported on Friday.
This was after athletics chiefs decided not to lift the suspension, which was imposed in November following accusations of state-sponsored doping.
Earlier this week, the anti-doping watchdog, World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) had alleged that its officials in Russia were being stopped from testing athletes and threatened by security services.
Hearing IAAF council vote to uphold Russia ban was unanimous. Russia sat out.
— Dan Roan (@danroan) June 17, 2016
This despite Russia pledging in November that it was “fully committed” to reforms.
The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) had imposed the ban after an independent Wada report expressed grave concerns depicting a culture of widespread doping, with even the secret services involved.
Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko said that he was “very sorry” that the cheating athletes were not caught by the country’s anti-doping systems, stopping short of admitting the scandal had been state-sponsored.
Russia was expected to implement a host of reforms and a taskforce has since then been studying the reforms but a fresh Wada report, issued on Wednesday, made more damaging claims.
What came as a crushing blow to the Russian Olympics team was the statement from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) vice-president John Coates, who said that Russia’s athletes should remain banned and not be allowed to take part in the Rio Games this summer.
He also alleged that Russia’s anti-doping agency and athletics body were “rotten to the core”.
A BBC report, however, said that the IOC could still allow Russian athletes to compete at the Olympics, which begin on 5 August.
IOC officials are expected to meet in Lausanne on Tuesday to discuss the matter. Some within the Olympics body feel that banning the entire track and field contingent would be like punishing even the innocent athletes.