Sep 15, 2016

    US stars' medications do not break rules: IOC


    THE World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) on Tuesday slammed Russian hackers who breached its database and published confidential records of United States Olympic gymnast Simone Biles, tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams and US women's basketball player Elena Delle Donne.

    Wada said the Russian cyber-espionage group Tsar Team (APT28), also known as Fancy Bears, had broken into its Anti-Doping Administration and Management System database.

    In a posting on its website, Fancy Bears claimed US athletes at the Olympics had "played well but not fair".

    However, none of the documents published by the group provided evidence of wrongdoing on the part of the athletes involved.

    Instead, the disclosed files set out instances where the athletes had been granted exemptions to use various medications for legitimate reasons - a common practice in the sports world.

    Biles said on Twitter she had taken medications for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder since childhood.

    "Please know I believe in clean sport, have always followed the rules and will continue to do so as fair play is critical to sport and is very important to me," said Biles, one of the stars of the Rio Olympics after winning four gold medals.

    Venus Williams expressed "disappointment" at the breach, stating: "I am one of the strongest supporters of maintaining the highest level of integrity in competitive sport."

    Delle Donne laughed off the revelations in an upbeat post on Twitter.

    "I'd like to thank the hackers for making the world aware that I legally take a prescription for a condition that I've been diagnosed with, which Wada granted me an exemption for. Thanks guys!" the basketball player wrote.

    An International Olympic Committee (IOC) spokesman said the leaked information was "clearly aimed at tarnishing the reputation of clean athletes" while reiterating that no anti-doping violation had occurred.AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE