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Reports suggest IAAF suppressed survey showing up to one third of top athletes admit to doping

Reports suggest IAAF suppressed survey showing up to one third of top athletes admit to doping
August 16, 2015

International athletics' governing body the IAAF suppressed a 2011 survey that revealed up to a third of the world's top competitors admitted using banned performance-enhancing techniques, according to London's The Sunday Times and German broadcaster ARD/WDR.

The authors of the study, which involved interviews with 1,800 athletes at the 2011 IAAF World Championships in South Korea, were told to sign a confidentiality agreement a month after the information had been collected and analysed, the outlets said.

The revelations are the latest in a series of damaging blows for the sport in the countdown to the start of this year's world championships in Beijing on 22nd August.

Earlier investigations by ARD and The Sunday Times prompted claims that more than 800 athletes tested between 2001 and 2012 had suspicious test results that were not followed up by the IAAF.

The IAAF has since initiated disciplinary action against 28 athletes after retesting samples from the 2005 and 2007 world championships with new technology that can uncover previously undetectable substances.

The organisation was criticised by the authors of the 2011 study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of Tuebingen in Germany and leaked to The Sunday Times and ARD/WDR.

A statement from the researchers explained "the IAAF's delaying publication for so long without good reason is a serious encroachment on the freedom of publication."

The statement added the IAAF had not commissioned the survey but had used its influence to suppress the findings.

The IAAF told the newspaper that it was still in negotiations with the study authors and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) about its publication.

The results of the study showed that 29 to 34% of the 1,800 competitors at the championships had violated anti-doping rules in the previous 12 months.

These findings demonstrate that doping is remarkably widespread among elite athletes and remains largely unchecked despite current biological testing programs.

The study was financed by WADA, which told the newspaper on Friday that they had given the IAAF the power to veto publication in return for allowing access to the athletes at the 2011 championships.

The lead author, Rolf Ulrich, said he and his fellow experts had been barred from even discussing their work.

Ulrich told The Sunday Times and ARD/WDR "the IAAF is blocking it.

"I think they are stakeholders with WADA and they just blocked the whole thing."
Reuters

22nd July 2015 - IAAF QUESTIONS MARKETING EFFORTS FOR 2015 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS IN BEIJING

23rd June 2015 - RESEARCH SHOWS SPORT DOPING ACTUALLY DECREASES PERFORMANCE

12th April 2015 - MORE THAN 100 FEDERATIONS TO JOIN IN 2015 IAAF WORLD ATHLETICS DAY

6th April 2014 - WADA ATHLETE CHAIR CALLS FOR GREATER ATHLETE INVOLVEMENT FOR A CLEAN SPORT 


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