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Shamko: Belarus is consistent in its commitment to combat doping

Sport 23.11.2017 | 13:23
Photo courtesy of Belarus' Sports and Tourism Ministry
Photo courtesy of Belarus' Sports and Tourism Ministry

MINSK, 23 November (BelTA) – Belarus is consistent in its commitment to fight against doping, Belarus' Sports and Tourism Minister Alexander Shamko said during the board meeting of the sports ministries of Belarus and Russia in Smolensk on 23 November, BelTA learned from the press service of the ministry.

Alexander Shamko believes that in the conditions of tough competition, malevolence and explicit speculation from opponents, the sports departments of Belarus and Russia need to demonstrate unity and solidarity. Russian Minister of Sport Pavel Kolobkov thanked his Belarusian counterparts for solidarity and readiness to jointly defend the rights in the international arena.

“Russia's position in the fight against doping is clear. First of all, there is no place for doping in sport. Secondly, there is no place for the principle of collective responsibility. Thirdly, the guilt of a person must be proved, and the accused person must have the right to defend himself. It is necessary to develop clear mechanisms for interaction between the IOC, WADA, national anti-doping agencies, independent experts in the field of healthcare and law. Yet, the world community witnesses an absurd situation when entire countries suffer because of artificial reasons,” Pavel Kolobkov noted.

Alexander Shamko supported the Russian counterpart in the need to develop clear mechanisms for interaction between international sports organizations and national federations and sports departments. “Belarus is consistent in its commitment to combating the use of doping and this position has been repeatedly voiced at the highest level. Our position is as follows: we compete honestly with Russians in sport and do not hide our time-tested friendship, our readiness to show solidarity and mutual assistance. We are convinced that our strength is in unity, that there is no place for political maneuvering in sport, and that we can and should act together in finding a way out from the most difficult situations,” the minister stressed.

During the meeting Russia expressed readiness to continue sharing its latest developments with Belarusian counterparts in training top-level athletes. Russian representatives also suggested using Russian bases more actively for training camps, joint events, including within the framework of the Union State.

According to Alexander Shamko, every year Russian athletes take part in more than 40 international competitions and 25 training camps in Belarus, while Belarusian athletes regularly train in Russia. He added that the two countries have introduced a new method of cooperation this year – interaction at the level of Olympic reserve colleges. In 2017 Belarusian representatives paid a visit to the St. Petersburg Olympic Reserve College and the Smolensk State Olympic Reserve College, while Russian counterparts studied the activity of Belarusian Olympic reserve colleges. The parties have agreed to strengthen cooperation, with the corresponding agreements in the pipeline.

After the board meeting in Smolensk the Sports Ministries of Belarus and Russia signed an agreement on cooperation which envisages further close cooperation between the two states in the field of sports and physical education, sport education and science in the Union State.

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