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Bach: IOC to cooperate closely with WADA

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IOC President Thomas Bach (L) answers questions during the press conference after the 134th session of the International Olympic Committee in Lausanne, Switzerland, June 26, 2019. (Xinhua/Cao Can)

KATOWICE (Xinhua) – The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) must cooperate closely to fight against doping in sport effectively, IOC president Thomas Bach said in Katowice on Tuesday.

On the World Conference on Doping in Sport, which started on Tuesday, the specialists discuss the fight against using forbidden substances in sport.

“On this 20th anniversary of WADA, we celebrate the spirit of equal partnership and cooperation between the stakeholders of the organisation. This cooperation between government authorities and the sports movement is at the heart of WADA,” claimed Bach.

“Six years ago, I announced a 10-million-dollar commitment by the IOC for the better protection of the clean athletes. We have delivered on this. Today, on behalf on the IOC, I make another pledge of up to 10 million dollars,” he added.

“I invite all of you here today to join hands so that together we can accomplish the mission of WADA. Together we can send a strong signal from Katowice to the athletes of the world and to the general public: a signal of determination, a signal of cooperation, a signal of credibility,” said the German.

During the conference, the incumbent Polish Minister of Sport and Tourism Witold Banka will be elected as the new president of WADA, and former Chinese speed skating world champion Yang Yang as the vice-president.

“It is all about the athletes. To be more precise: it is all about the clean athletes. These words which I used at the 4th World Conference on Doping in Sport in Johannesburg 2013, are still true today. This is why I would like to congratulate the incoming president of WADA, Witold Banka, and the incoming vice-president, Yang Yang. Both of you are former athletes, which sends a great signal as we renew our commitment to the clean athletes. You are bringing a new energy and fresh determination to WADA and we are looking forward to joining hands with you,” said Bach.

The head of IOC also said about the Dried Blood Sport (DBS) method as a one of the promising collective research project. “The DBS method could very well revolutionise the anti-doping fight. This is a collaborative project between WADA, the IOC, the International Testing Agency, as well as several National Anti-Doping Organisations, including the United States, China, Japan, Switzerland and Australia,” the German continued his speech.

Bach stressed that it was agreed DBS method should be implemented no later than the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, while some aspects of DBS testing could be used as early as the Tokyo 2020.

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