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IWF Executive Board Welcomes Progress On Clean Sport

Colorado Springs; 27 March: The International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) Executive Board today welcomed progress in the federation’s work to protect clean athletes through extensive anti-doping efforts.

The IWF Executive Board met for two days in Colorado Springs and received an update on the progress the IWF has made in the implementation of the IWF Clean Sport Commission’s recommendations which were presented to the IOC last year. Among the recommendations that will be implemented is the introduction of the new IWF Anti-Doping Policy which will come into effect next month and ensure the IWF is in line with international best practice. The Executive Board also received information on the implementation of the Tbilisi decision, the follow-up work of the Monitoring Group and the criteria which need to be fulfilled by the suspended Member Federations to change their cultures.

“The IWF is determined to do all it can to protect clean lifters, and I am very pleased by the way the whole Executive Board has been engaged with this important work,’ said IWF President Tamas Ajan. “Over the past several years, the IWF has radically improved the way it deals with the historic problem of doping, which mainly concerned a limited number of countries where there was a broader culture of doping.”

“Our Executive Board was very happy to note the progress which has been made over the last three months and that implementation of the Clean Sport Commission’s recommendations is already complete in many areas. The new Anti-Doping Policy we are bringing into force this month shows that we are already delivering on our commitments. The Board was also particularly happy to note WADA’s confirmation last week of our compliance with the WADA Code.”

Included in the meeting’s busy agenda was a presentation on the IOC-approved Tokyo 2020 Qualification System – an important step in ensuring a new competition structure and qualification process which will support clean competition at the Olympic Games. The IWF Executive Board also welcomed the plans to hold an educational seminar in Moscow in May of this year, with WADA’s support, that will include representatives from the suspended member federations. These members, who contributed disproportionately to the sport’s total number of doping cases, are all working to change their historical cultures around doping.

“To change culture, first you must have a sense of urgency. The IOC’s deadlines and our suspensions of member federations have created that urgency,” added Ajan. “Then you must have a clear vision of the culture you want. Weightlifting understands that this is a sport based on fair and clean performances. Changing culture also requires a broad coalition of people to make the change: working in partnership with the IOC, with WADA and the national anti-doping organisations, and with our own federations, coaches and athletes, we have this coalition also. All the ingredients for change have been put in place, so it is no surprise to see the change actually happening. I have complete confidence that the IWF can demonstrate this to the IOC’s satisfaction.”

IWF Clean Sport Commission Chair Richard Young added:

“The implementation is underway and is going well and we will be meeting to review the status of the completion of the recommendations again before the IOC Executive Board meeting in June.”

During the meeting there were also updates on the communications and social media as well as television and broadcasting.