AP Interview: WADA says Russia critics harming doping fight

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AP Interview: WADA says Russia critics harming doping fight
FILE - In this file photo dated Thursday, Nov. 16, 2017, World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) director general Olivier Niggli speaks to the media in Seoul, South Korea. During an interview published Monday Oct. 22, 2018, Niggli told The Associated Press it was now more beneficial to work with Russia to clean up sport, rather than forcing the government to confess to orchestrating the abuse of drugs and cover-ups. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man, FILE)

A leader of the World Anti-Doping Agency says it’s better to work with Russia to bring its drug-fighting operation into compliance than to criticize the reinstatement and insist that the sports power publicly confess to orchestrating a doping scheme.

WADA director general Olivier Niggli told The Associated Press “now is the time to concentrate on the real work, stop the political arguments and move forward.”

The decision to reinstate Russia’s anti-doping agency led to protests from across the globe, most notably from Olympic champion Beckie Scott, who quit her role on the WADA compliance review committee.

Scott later accused officials of bullying her into ending her opposition.

Niggli says WADA has asked an expert to review recordings and transcripts of the back-and-forth with Scott ahead of the next meeting in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Nov. 14.

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