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Council make historic decision on Anti-Doping

European Athletics has declared that athletes from European countries, sanctioned for major doping offences will be subject to new competition entry regulations for future major championships, which will include missing the European Athletics Championships, after the completion of their suspension under IAAF anti-doping rules.

At its meeting in Birmingham on 5 March, the European Athletics Council decided to impose a minimum two-year period of ineligibility from all European Championship, to begin on the day a suspended athlete is cleared to compete by the IAAF after a doping suspension. Under the regulation, which applies to any current suspension as well as to offences committed in the future, athletes will not be prevented from taking part in international invitational or national level competitions.

European Athletics President Hansjörg Wirz said, “The Council has unanimously decided that competing in our championships represents a special privilege and that we must not allow the negative notoriety of the small number of athletes who cheat to spoil the experience or distract attention from those who follow the rules.”

“Our message is very clear and we will do what it takes to ensure the credibility of the sport and protect the health of athletes and young people” said Wirz.

“This is an historic decision for us,” he added “and we will propose to the IAAF Congress in Osaka in August that it take a similar position with regard to future IAAF championships.”

In other business, the Council received a detailed progress report on the work to restructure the athletics competition programme and calendar in Europe. President Wirz said the proposals, which are being developed as a part of the European Athletics’ “Need for Change” project, will be presented to the European Athletics Congress in Cannes on 14 April

The Council also decided to accept the proposal by President Wirz to allow former Olympic Champion Valeriy Borzov to take part in the council election at the Congress.

The rights to stage the next two editions of the European Athletics U23 Championships were awarded by the Council to Kaunas, Lithuania (2009) and Ostrava, Czech Republic (2011) respectively.

The Serbian city of Novi Sad was awarded the right to stage the 2009 European Athletics Junior Championships.

source EEA

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