‘Self-interested decision’: Russian verdict in Valeeva case sparks outrage

“self-interest decision”
The Russian verdict in the Valieva case infuriated

Even a year after Olympic team competition in figure skating, it’s unclear if the result will hold up. Russia acquits Kamila Valeeva, who tested positive – but doping experts around the world consider it a mistake. Now CAS should come into effect again.

The World Anti-Doping Agency is “concerned” and threatens further legal action America’s number one doping hunter “cannot accept Rosada’s ‘selfish decision’ — and the International Olympic Committee is pressing for clarification ‘without further undue delay'”. The latter is fictional: the case of Russian figure skating princess Camila Valewa is on its way to becoming a never-ending story.

After much hesitation, the court of the Russian anti-doping agency RUSADA made its decision in the case of the European champion: after a positive test before the Winter Olympics in Beijing, which was taken by RUSADA itself, a penalty was imposed against the 16-year-old who was waived. Almost a year after the Olympics, the classification in the team competition is still denoted by an asterisk. Parts of the sporting world were stunned.

Russia triumphed with the brilliant Valiyeva last February — but no medals were awarded because during the Beijing Games, a urine sample Valiyeva took at the Russian Championships in mid-December 2021 contained the banned drug Tremetazidine.

However, the ad hoc panel of the CAS International Court of Arbitration for Sport allowed Valieva in Beijing to participate in the individual decision a few days later. After finishing first in the short program, the exceptional talent collapsed under public pressure in the freestyle and dropped to fourth place. Since then there has been a stalemate. in several ways.

“No fault or omission”

A few days after the outbreak of the Olympic flame, Russia began its war of aggression against Ukraine. The nation’s sport—which competed in Beijing without the country’s name, flag, and anthem due to doping violations—and its athletes initially disappeared from the international scene. And with it Valeeva’s case.

However, WADA continued to put pressure on RUSADA, which was closed until December 17, 2022. Because the Russians kept prolonging the case, the World Anti-Doping Agency named CAS. Given the latest developments, it is likely that the court in Lausanne will open again, although WADA expressly reserved the right to challenge it in its statement.

The RUSADA tribunal had earlier concluded that while Valieva had committed an anti-doping rule violation, no “fault or negligence” had been found. In addition, Valieva, who was 15 years old when the positive sample was taken, should be considered a “protected person”.

For Tygart, it’s about credibility

WADA is now requesting full reasoning for the ruling to determine whether it is in compliance with World Anti-Doping Law. The International Olympic Committee welcomed the announcement and said in response to a question about the need to “address the matter as soon as possible.” Can the runner-up from Beijing – USA – still be happy with the gold from the heart today?

Others have already made up their minds, like Hajo Sepelt. The ARD doping expert wrote: “Absurd – it happens in undemocratic and opaque sports structures. (…) Russian sport does not seem to be able to build credible independent structures. But the IOC wants Russian athletes in Paris.” Twitter.

So for USADA President Travis Tegart, there’s no mistaking it. WADA and the ISU will have to “appeal this decision in order to protect the credibility of the anti-doping system and the rights of all athletes”. “The world cannot accept this self-serving decision,” Tegart said. “Justice requires a full, fair and public hearing outside of Russia.”

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