Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko has remarked he plans to make it illegal for sports officials to publicly report in the event of an athlete failing a drugs test.

Mutko said “noise and uproar” happen when names are leaked to the public and violates the presumption of innocence. The sports minister added we are now going to administratively and criminally forbid the leaking of names before the B sample is released. Russian sports federations were accused by Mutko of routinely leaking drug test results to media outlets before “B” samples are tested. The Russian minister everyone has already forgotten that an athlete was justified if his or her name is leaked and later cleared.

A few days back, Vitaly Mutko said he is ready to resign if asked to do so over Russia’s series of doping scandals but Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said Mutko would remain in his post. Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Mutko will continue to work as the sports minister and added let us not forget that the president ordered an in-depth investigation into the Meldonium scandal. Peskov also said we in this case need to reconstruct events to avoid this in the future.

In neighboring Georgia, there have been six failed doping tests for the same drug in the nation’s wrestling team, including Olympic silver medalist Davit Modzmanashvili who is facing a possible life ban for a second career offence.

Earlier this month, former World no. 1 tennis star Maria Sharapova announced that she had failed a drug test at the 2016 Australian Open. The Russian tennis star admitted she had tested positive for Meldonium that has only been banned by WADA since the beginning of 2016. Later, it turned out many other Russian athletes had not picked up on the fact that the substance had recently been banned, including short-track athlete Pavel Kulizhnikov and figure skater Ekaterina Bobrova, both Sochi Olympic champions.

Recently, the head of the Russian wrestling federation recently said Russian national team wrestlers Sergei Semyonov and Evgeny Saleyev had tested positive for the recently banned endurance-boosting drug Meldonium. Mikhail Mamiashvili said there were “several tens” of doping cases in Russia in speedskating, figure skating, swimming, and other sports. Russia won seven gold medals at this month’s European championships and finished at the top of the medals table in wrestling at the 2012 London Olympics.

In another development, Russian NBA stars Timofey Mozgov, Sasha Kaun, and Sergey Karasev remarked the recent doping scandals involving Russian athletes have dealt a big blow to sports in the country. The basketball players said they are however hopeful that the national athletics team of Russia will be allowed to compete in the Rio Olympics this summer. Timofey Mozgov of the Cleveland Cavaliers said the Russian doping scandals should “be a good lesson for everybody.”

Sasha Kaun said it is just hard to see so many athletes get banned from their sports. Kaun added he is sure a majority of those athletes are not at fault and it is the doctors that don’t follow the rules and regulations of the World Anti-Doping Agency.

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