Lausanne, May 22 (IANS) The World Athletics Doping Review Board on Saturday cleared 23 Russian athletes to compete in international competitions this year as neutral athletes.
The review board said that while the Russian national federation (RusAF) would remain suspended, their athletes, who have met “exceptional eligibility criteria”, will be allowed to compete.
While there is no cap on the number of Russian athletes who can compete at international competitions this year provided they have the authorised neutral athlete (ANA) status, “no more than 10 will be granted eligibility to compete as authorised neutral athletes at any championship competition, including the Tokyo Olympic Games…”, said a World Athletics (WA) statement.
“RusAF may choose which 10 athletes are able to compete from those who have been granted ANA status, but it must prioritise the selection of athletes who are in the International Registered Testing Pool,” said WA.
Saturday’s decision takes the total number of Russian athletes who can compete in international competitions to 27.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) had in December 2020 found Russia not in compliance with international anti-doping rules and had banned it from fielding a national team in the Olympics and any world championship sporting event for the next two years.
Individual Russian athletes who compete will not be allowed to use their nation’s flag and anthem.