IOC President Urged to Resign

IOC President Urged to ResignIOC President Urged to Resign

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach has been urged to resign by Jim Walden, the lawyer of whistleblower Grigory Rodchenkov, who described his leadership as “pathetic” and accused him of “kowtowing to powerful Russia”.

Jim Walden has reacted angrily to claims by the IOC that they are unable to protect Rodchenkov, the former director of Russia’s national anti-doping laboratory in Moscow before he fled the country to seek asylum in the US in November 2015, wrote.

Since then Rodchenkov has provided much of the evidence to the World Anti-Doping Agency and IOC of “systemic manipulation” of anti-doping practices, including at Sochi 2014, which has led to Russia being forced to compete under a neutral flag at next year’s Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Walden, though, claims that the IOC should have done more to protect Rodchenkov, who has consistently been the victim of attacks from Russian officials, including death threats.

The New York City-based lawyer has contrasted the treatment of Russia by the IOC with that of Kuwait which was forced to compete as “Independent Olympic Athletes” at Rio 2016 and remain suspended by the IOC due to governmental interference.

Athletes from Russia, however, will compete under the banner of “Olympic Athletes from Russia” at Pyeongchang 2018 and the Russian Olympic Committee has been told they could be reinstated in time to take part under their own flag at the closing ceremony.

“Lest there be any doubt about the political nature of the IOC’s decision making, I recall it imposed a multi-year and continuing complete ban of Kuwait for acts far less serious than Russia’s criminality,” Walden said in a statement, December 30.

“The IOC cannot possibly justify this as anything other than kowtowing to powerful Russia, while using the so-called ‘nuclear option’ on a weaker country. From this perspective, the IOC has proven pathetic and a change in leadership is in order.

Walden claimed that “powerful voices” within the IOC and FIFA “are now aligning to try to discredit or silence Rodchenkov as the Winter Olympics and the World Cup draw near”.

In his statement earlier this week, Walden had claimed the IOC would be happy if Rodchenkov were not available to give evidence at the Court of Arbitration of Sport because he feared for his safety.


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