America told to name drug failures

By Mike Rowbottom
Wednesday 06 February 2002 01:00

Pressure is growing here on US officials to release the names of athletes who are known to have tested positive at the Sydney Olympics of 2000.

Lamine Diack, president of the International Association of Athletics Federations, will hold urgent discussions with US Olympic Committee members in the next couple of days, seeking for details to be released.

Earlier this week Dick Pound, chairman of the International Olympic Committee world anti-doping body, said that USA Track and Field should release the names of the 17 athletes who tested positive in 2000, including one who competed at the Games, or face expulsion. "They have serious problems which have to be addressed,'' Pound said. "The US Olympic Committee or the IAAF has to do something. Kick them out – it's not rocket science. If you have to form another federation then that's what you do.

"You can't have them flouting the rules. They are refusing to provide information as required on the pretext that the law prohibits them from giving a name. Nothing in any US law prevents them from giving names out. Think of it. If you are charged with murder, your name is given out.''

USA Track and Field, which denied that any of its athletes who had tested positive were present in Sydney, refused to comment on Pound's challenge.

Meanwhile, the IOC general assembly here has heard worrying news about preparations for the next Olympics in Athens two years from now.

Denis Oswald, head of the IOC panel assessing the Greek's progress, said there was a shortage of hotel rooms, and construction work on the main Olympic venue was being hampered.

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