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IAAF upholds ban on Russian athletes over doping

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The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) said on Monday that it will maintain its ban on Russian athletes over doping that it imposed in 2015, following a council meeting of top officials in Qatar. Rune Andersen, head of the doping task force for the International Association of Athletics Federations, said two issues remained unresolved -- the examination of data received from the Moscow anti-doping laboratory and the issue of outstanding costs being sought from Russia because of the scandal. "Two key issues remain outstanding," said Andersen at a press conference in Doha.
"These need to be resolved."
He also said his task force was looking into claims that coaches from the discredited Russian athletics regime were still involved in the sport which, Andersen said, "run counter to assurances" received from Moscow.
Asked if this latest extension of the ban meant Russian athletes would not be able to compete under the flag at this year's world championships in Doha in September and October, Andersen said there was still time but conditions "have to be met" by Russia.
IAAF head Sebastian Coe refused to be drawn on whether Russia had time to enter the worlds, saying he didn't "want to speculate" on the country's chances.
"Let's see where this process takes us. And then make whatever adjustments we might need to," Coe said in a conference call with reporters.
"At the moment it's important we don't start speculating. It will be dependent on the recommendations given by the task force."
Responding to the IAAF's concerns, Russian Sports Minister Pavel Kolobkov insisted that any coach found to have been involved in doping was barred from working with the national team.
"The coaches and the athletes who have been banned for doping are automatically excluded from the national squad participants' list," Kolobkov said.

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