'IAAF MAY CLEAR RUSSIAN ATHLETES FOR 2017 EUROPEAN ATHLETICS CHAMPIONSHIP'

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) may allow Russian athletes to take part in the European Athletics Championship in March next year based on personal applications, a senior Russian sports official said on Wednesday. "We are waiting for new admission criteria, which will be sent soon," Dmitry Shlyakhtin, the president of the All- Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF), said, reports Tass.

"We believe that at the 2017 European Championship we will be participating based on individual applications." Last year, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Independent Commission carried out an investigation of the activities of the ARAF, the Moscow anti-doping laboratory, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) and the Russian Sports Ministry, and announced the results of the probe on November 9. The commission accused certain athletes and sports officials of doping abuse and involvement in other activities related to violations of international regulations on performance enhancing substances.

Eventually, the IAAF decided to suspend ARAF's membership in the global governing body of athletics and put forward a host of criteria, which the Russian ruling body of track and field sports was obliged to implement to restore its membership in the global federation. In mid-June, the IAAF Council ruled it was still too early to restore ARAF's membership in the international organisation subsequently extending the suspension of Russian athletes from all international tournaments, including the 2016 Rio Olympics in August

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