Marathon runner Maria Konovalova is one of five Russian athletes to have been banned today ©Getty Images

The All Russian Athletics Federation (ARAF) has today banned five athletes for doping offences - while its President Vadim Zelichenok has distanced his organisation from allegations centering around former International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) President Lamine Diack.

Marathon runner Maria Konovalova, hammer thrower Maria Bespalova, race-walker Evgeny Nushtaev and middle-distance runners Vlas Bredikhin and Yaroslav Khlopov have all been sanctioned as the scandal which is rocking Russian athletics continues.

The sanctions come just a day after it emerged that Diack has been placed under investigation in France where he is accused of taking money from Russia to hide positive doping tests.

He is suspected of both corruption and money laundering but Zelichenok said the governing body hadn't been contacted about the developments.

"No-one has been in touch with the new representatives of the Russian Athletics Federation about the current situation," he told Reuters.

"We have not received one question from any organisation.

"Therefore, this case does not involve the ARAF in any way at the moment.

"Let's wait for some official information.

"We do not intend to carry out any individual actions on our own.

"In my opinion, we are not facing any kind of sanctions."

London 2012 hammer thrower Maria Bespalova has also been banned
London 2012 hammer thrower Maria Bespalova has also been banned ©Getty Images

Today's news also comes ahead of the publication of a report on Monday (November 9) by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Commission, which has investigated alleged systematic doping within Russian athletics.

A three-man panel, chaired by Canada's founding WADA President Richard Pound, will present a report called "Top secret doping - how Russia makes its winners?" in Geneva.

They began to look into the issue in January following allegations published on German television channel ARD and in the Sunday Times newspaper.

Out of the five banned athletes, Konovalova is perhaps the best known after finishing second in the Chicago Marathon in 2010 and third in 2013.

The 41-year-old has been banned for two years and all of her results going back to 2009 have been declared void, due to irregularities in her biological passport.

Twenty-nine-year-old Bespalova, meanwhile, finished 11th at the London 2012 Olympics and has been banned for four-years after testing positive for an illegal steroid, while Bredikhin and Khlopov have been hit with four-year bans.

Nushtaev has been banned for six-months and is the latest in a long-line of Russian race-walkers to be sanctioned.

Six of the country's walking squad were banned by the IAAF in September. 

Related stories
November 2015:
 Former IAAF President Lamine Diack accused of taking cash to cover up Russian doping
November 2015: WADA Commission to unveil report on Russian doping allegations on November 9
September 2015: Six more Russian race-walkers suspended by IAAF after failing doping tests
August 2015: Race walking world champion to skip World Cup because of Russian doping scandals - as another fails test
January 2015: Tallent calls for blanket ban on Russians as IAAF expresses "major concern" over doping