Five Russian weightlifters have been handed provisional suspensions by the IWF based on evidence passed to it by the World Anti Doping Administration (WADA).
The suspensions are not as the results of failed anti-doping tests but rather are under Article 2.2 of the IWF anti-doping policy, which applies to situations where attempted use of a prohibited substance is established by means other than a blood or urine test. It appears that in this case, the evidence was collected by the McLaren Report into state-sponsored doping in Russia, along with data from the Russian anti-doping laboratory that was at the heart of the scandal.
The McLaren report found that between 2011 and 2015, at least 117 positive anti-doping tests of weightlifters were tampered with.
The suspended athletes are:
- David Bedzhanyan – 2012 and 2013 European champion
- Oleg Chen – 2013 and 2014 European champion
- Ruslan Albegov – 2012 Olympic bronze medalist, 2013 and 2014 world champion, 2012 and 2013 European champion
- Egor Klimonov – 2019 European silver medalist
- Tima Turieva – 2013 world champion
If Albegov’s suspension is upheld and he is found to have cheated at the 2012 Olympic Games, Russia will lose its only remaining weightlifting medal from that Games. Five Russians have already lost their medals due to failures in retrospective testing of samples from 2012.