The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has called for the International Olympic Committee to reject entries from Russian athletes for the Olympic Games in Rio next month following the publication of the McLaren report.
The report, ordered in response to allegations of state-sponsored doping in the country, showed that Russian laboratories covered up 580 positive drugs tests, including 26 in cycling.
It also claimed that the Ministry of Sport in Russia was not only aware of the doping in sport, but also helped and orchestrated the cover-ups.
Noting that it has not "the authority or remit in respect of entries to competitions", WADA called for severe sanctions to be brought.
"WADA recommends to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to consider, under their respective Charters, to decline entries, for Rio 2016, of all athletes submitted by the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) and the Russian Paralympic Committee," it said in a statement.
"WADA also recommends that Russian Government officials be denied access to international competitions, including Rio 2016."
WADA president Sir Craig Reedie says the programme's sole aim was to "subvert the doping control process".
“Shamefully, the McLaren Report corroborates the allegations, exposing a modus operandi of serious manipulation of the doping control process in the satellite laboratory set up in Sochi for the 2014 Games; and, the Moscow laboratory since 2011 and after the Sochi Games,” Reedie said.
“Not only does the evidence implicate the Russian Ministry of Sport in running a doping system that’s sole aim was to subvert the doping control process, it also states that there was active participation and assistance of the Federal Security Service and the Center of Sports Preparation of National Teams of Russia.”
Participants in athletics from Russia have already been banned from taking part in the Olympic Games, with WADA now calling for more widespread sanctions.
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Stuart Clarke is a News Associates trained journalist who has worked for the likes of the British Olympic Associate, British Rowing and the England and Wales Cricket Board, and of course Cycling Weekly. His work at Cycling Weekly has focused upon professional racing, following the World Tour races and its characters.
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