Russia wants US to extradite doping whistleblower

The Russian government says it will demand that the U.S. extradite Grigory Rodchenkov, the man who blew the whistle on Russia's state-sponsored blood-doping program at the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The organization that oversees blood tests for athletes competing in international events, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), has accused Russia of a massive state-sponsored effort to hide cheating by its athletes.  WADA claims, based largely on Rodchenkov's testimony, that the Russian sports federation substituted clean blood samples and replaced tainted ones for dozens of athletes. 

Moscow has denied everything.

Reuters:

The committee also denied that any sample tampering had taken place during the Sochi Games and said it had not found evidence of a state-sponsored doping program in the country.

"The arguments of WADA independent expert McLaren on the substitution of positive doping tests with negative ones at the Sochi anti-doping laboratory during the Winter Olympics have been refuted, as well as the existence in Russia of a state doping program for athletes to win a maximum number of medals," the committee said.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has been retesting all Russian athletes' samples from the 2014 Games following Rodchenkov's allegations.

Last week cross-country skiers Alexander Legkov and Evgeniy Belov became the first Russians to be sanctioned for anti-doping rule violations as part of an IOC investigation into allegations of widespread doping among Russians and sample tampering by laboratory and security officials at the Sochi Games.

The IOC has said it would decide on the participation of Russian competitors at the Pyeongchang Olympics in February during its executive board meeting next month.

Russia and the U.S. have no extradition treaty, so it's unclear how the U.S. would be able to fulfill Russia's request.

Hackers linked to Russia broke into the WADA database last year and posted the medical records of dozens of U.S. Olympic medalists.  It was thought to be retaliation for the WADA investigation. 

Rodchenkov wasn't the only person to testify to Russian cheating.  Russian track star Yuliya Stepanova and her husband also revealed details of the doping scheme.  Her medical records were also hacked, causing her to flee Russia for safer climes.

By all rights, Russia should be barred from international competition, including the Olympics, and its testing program closely supervised.  But being a major competitor, Moscow will likely be treated almost like any other country with its athletes undergoing blood tests taken and processed by their national committees.

The Russian government says it will demand that the U.S. extradite Grigory Rodchenkov, the man who blew the whistle on Russia's state-sponsored blood-doping program at the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The organization that oversees blood tests for athletes competing in international events, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), has accused Russia of a massive state-sponsored effort to hide cheating by its athletes.  WADA claims, based largely on Rodchenkov's testimony, that the Russian sports federation substituted clean blood samples and replaced tainted ones for dozens of athletes. 

Moscow has denied everything.

Reuters:

The committee also denied that any sample tampering had taken place during the Sochi Games and said it had not found evidence of a state-sponsored doping program in the country.

"The arguments of WADA independent expert McLaren on the substitution of positive doping tests with negative ones at the Sochi anti-doping laboratory during the Winter Olympics have been refuted, as well as the existence in Russia of a state doping program for athletes to win a maximum number of medals," the committee said.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has been retesting all Russian athletes' samples from the 2014 Games following Rodchenkov's allegations.

Last week cross-country skiers Alexander Legkov and Evgeniy Belov became the first Russians to be sanctioned for anti-doping rule violations as part of an IOC investigation into allegations of widespread doping among Russians and sample tampering by laboratory and security officials at the Sochi Games.

The IOC has said it would decide on the participation of Russian competitors at the Pyeongchang Olympics in February during its executive board meeting next month.

Russia and the U.S. have no extradition treaty, so it's unclear how the U.S. would be able to fulfill Russia's request.

Hackers linked to Russia broke into the WADA database last year and posted the medical records of dozens of U.S. Olympic medalists.  It was thought to be retaliation for the WADA investigation. 

Rodchenkov wasn't the only person to testify to Russian cheating.  Russian track star Yuliya Stepanova and her husband also revealed details of the doping scheme.  Her medical records were also hacked, causing her to flee Russia for safer climes.

By all rights, Russia should be barred from international competition, including the Olympics, and its testing program closely supervised.  But being a major competitor, Moscow will likely be treated almost like any other country with its athletes undergoing blood tests taken and processed by their national committees.

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