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SBD Global/January 11, 2017/Leagues and Governing Bodies

Sebastian Coe Rejects Summons To Give Evidence Regarding Russian Corruption

IAAF President Sebastian Coe "will reject a summons to Parliament to give evidence over alleged corruption in Russian athletics," according to Amitai Winehouse of the London DAILY MAIL. The select committee for Culture, Media & Sport heard evidence from former long distance runner David Bedford on Tuesday suggesting Bedford "had tried to raise the alarm to Coe" in Aug. '14. Bedford sent Coe an email "about the extortion" of Russian marathon runner Liliya Shobukhova. But in Nov. '15, Coe told the committee "he had no knowledge of the scale of the corruption" inside the organization prior to revelations that followed his election. A statement from Committee Chair Damian Collins said, "David Bedford gave very measured evidence but it raised clear and important questions over the timing and extent of Lord Coe's knowledge of these allegations. ... There should be no reason he cannot find a time in his diary to attend the Committee by January 31 as we now request." But Coe "is able to reject the invitation as he is a Lord and therefore under no obligation to return." An IAAF statement said, "Today's evidence has offered nothing new to the committee's inquiry into 'Combatting Doping in Sport'" (DAILY MAIL, 1/10). The PA reported Bedford told the committee that he had "called and emailed Coe to warn him about the scandal." Coe told MPs he "simply forwarded Bedford's emails to the IAAF's new ethics board without reading them properly or opening the attached documents." Bedford said that he was "very surprised and quite disappointed" when he heard Coe say that (PA, 1/10).

BRAILSFORD RIPS UKAD: The PA reported in a separate piece "embattled" Team Sky Principal Dave Brailsford criticized UK Anti-Doping Chair David Kenworthy for "undermining the investigation into allegations of wrongdoing in cycling." Brailsford was "commenting publicly for the first time" since being called before Parliament at the Culture, Media & Sport select committee on Dec. 19. The evidence provided by Brailsford and "other leading figures" in British cycling was on Saturday described as "extraordinary" and "very disappointing" by Kenworthy. Brailsford: "The only extraordinary thing, I think, was the chairman of UKAD's comments the other day when he commented about an ongoing investigation. As an organization like UKAD and for the chair to say it is an extraordinary thing -- that's the extraordinary thing in itself" (PA, 1/10).
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