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Russia could be reinstated in December, says IAAF

In this June 17, 2016 file photo, Rune Andersen, Chair of IAAF Inspection Team, speaks at a news conference at the Grand Hotel in Vienna, Austria. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- Russia could be provisionally reinstated to worldwide track and field competition in December if it meets certain conditions, the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) said Friday.

Track and field's governing body suspended Russia in November 2015 after a World Anti-Doping Agency report detailed widespread, state-sponsored doping in the sport.

"They have made significant improvement in meeting the outstanding requirements," Rune Andersen, the IAAF's Russia task force head, said during a two-day meeting in Argentina's capital.

"In fact, in some cases, they have gone above and beyond what is required."

Andersen, however, said three conditions had to be met before Russia could be readmitted to international competition.

Firstly, RUSAF (the Russian Athletics Federation) has to pay for costs incurred by the IAAF as a result of the scandal.

The WADA must also reinstate the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA), which depends on the country acknowledging the findings that officials at the Russian ministry of sports orchestrated the doping of its athletes, and its cover-up.

Finally, Russian authorities have to give access to data from doping tests carried out at RUSADA's Moscow laboratory from 2011-15.

"It would make a mockery of clean sport to reinstate RUSAF when the evidence required to resolve these suspicions, one way or the other, is still being withheld," Andersen said.

WADA is communicating with Russian authorities to try to resolve these issues before the meeting of the doping agency's executive committee in September.

"We hope there will be a breakthrough," Andersen said. "If these points are resolved before the (IAAF) Council's next meeting in Monaco in December 2018, then the Task Force would hope and expect to be able to recommend that RUSAF would be provisionally reinstated at that time."

The Russian team was banned from the Winter Olympics in February.

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