Russia could be provisionally reinstated to international track and field competition in December if it meets certain conditions, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) said.
Track and field’s governing body suspended Russia in November 2015 after a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) report detailed widespread, state-sponsored doping in the sport.
Russia had hoped to be reinstated but IAAF officials meeting in Argentina on Friday unanimously upheld the ban and said that although Russia had taken positive steps in the right direction it had not done enough to merit inclusion.
“We have brought about change and it’s change that is very viable,” IAAF president Sebastian Coe said during the two-day meeting in Argentina’s capital.
“But we weren’t yet at that point where every element of that criteria had been met.”
Rune Andersen, the IAAF’s Russia task force head, said Russia have made “significant improvement” in achieving the requirements set out by the sport’s governing body.
“In fact, in some cases, they have gone above and beyond what is required,” he said.
Andersen, however, said three requirements had to be met before Russia could be readmitted to international competition.
Firstly, RUSAF (the Russian Athletics Federation) has to pay for costs incurred by the IAAF as a result of the scandal.
WADA must also reinstate the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA), which depends on the country acknowledging the findings that officials at the Russian ministry of sports orchestrated the doping of its athletes, and its cover-up.
Finally, Russian authorities have to give access to data from doping tests carried out at RUSADA’s Moscow laboratory from 2011-15.
“It would make a mockery of clean sport to reinstate RUSAF when the evidence required to resolve these suspicions, one way or the other, is still being withheld,” Andersen said.
WADA is communicating with Russian authorities to try to resolve these issues before the meeting of the doping agency’s executive committee in September.
“We hope there will be a breakthrough,” Andersen said. “If these points are resolved before the (IAAF) Council’s next meeting in Monaco in December 2018, then the Task Force would hope and expect to be able to recommend that RUSAF would be provisionally reinstated at that time.”