The one-year suspensions of the nine IWF Members Federations (MFs) found to have had three or more anti-doping rule violations (ADRVs) during the retesting of samples taken at Beijing 2008 and London 2012, officially took effect yesterday.
The IWF has informed each of the nine MFs of their suspension, following the decision of the IWF Executive Board on 30 September 2017 to approve the recommendation of IWF’s Tbilisi Commission and to uphold the Board’s decision of 22 June 2016. Each MF will now have 21 days to appeal the decision.
IWF President Tamas Ajan said:
“The steps taken in weightlifting today are unprecedented in the history of sport. They show our total commitment to protect clean athletes. It was clear to us at the IWF that the problems in these nine countries required whole national cultures to change. For many of these member federations, there has already been a change of leadership and work has already begun to change the culture. Of course, we welcome these developments, as they will facilitate to those federations to comply with the requirements of a clean sport.“
“The IWF Anti-Doping efforts will continue with increased intensity in these 9 countries. IWF will do everything to make sure they will put in place the necessary anti-doping measures to address their doping issues so that they can take their places alongside the other members of our family once again.”
The IWF will work with the nine suspended MFs to ensure that they implement the IWF Rules in their countries and construct their national level ‘shields’ to protect clean athletes. IWF has urged these countries to willingly undertake complying with a massive set of criteria which aim to trigger the cultural shift thus ensuring that once these Federations regain their eligibility, a level-playing field is finally ensured at national level.
IWF expects these MFs to expressly acknowledge their responsibility for clean sport and to use this opportunity to actively commit to the fight against doping as a means to restore their reputation.
In case an MF decides to unconditionally accept the set of criteria it automatically involves the acceptance of being monitored by an Independent Monitoring Group which will mainly consist of outside-the-sport anti-doping experts.
The Group will carefully assess the situation of each MF which undertakes to comply with the criteria and create an action plan to address these issues one by one.
The monitoring will continue throughout the entire suspension period.
If fully satisfied, the Group at its sole discretion may decide to grant a Partial Conditional Reinstatement of the MF’s right to participate at IWF Events. The earliest time of such reinstatement depends on the gravity of the MF’s violation of the Policy rendered by the Board on 22 June (i.e.: number and severity of re-analysis cases). The reinstatement will not affect any other rights of the MF suspended as per the Board’s decision – these will remain suspended even in case a conditional lift is granted.
The full suspension will be immediately reinstated if the Group considers that the MF subject to the conditional reinstatement fails to meet any of the criteria.
Any decision of the Group will be final and binding and will not be subject to appeal.