WADA President Sir Craig Reedie has told Russian news agency TASS that the organisation "strongly supports" reinstating RUSADA to the World Anti-Doping Code ©Getty Images

World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) President Sir Craig Reedie has said the organisation "strongly supports" the idea of reinstating Russia to the World Anti-Doping Code.

In an interview with news agency TASS, Sir Craig said WADA are waiting for the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) to implement re-compliance criteria.

In November 2015, a WADA Independent Commission investigation accused RUSADA, the All-Russia Athletics Federation, the Moscow anti-doping laboratory and the nation’s Sports Ministry of helping athletes carry out doping abuse.

This led to RUSADA and work at the laboratory being suspended.

ARAF, now called the Russian Athletics Federation (RusAF), were eventually suspended from participating at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games with a report published by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren in December suggesting there was evidence of samples being tampered with.

"WADA is resolutely focused on supporting the Russian Anti-Doping Agency in its efforts to return to compliance with the World Anti-Doping Code, but it is first important that there is acceptance of the findings of the McLaren Report in Russia,” Sir Craig said.

Sir Craig Reedie also said WADA are not considering altering TUEs rules ©Getty Images
Sir Craig Reedie also said WADA are not considering altering TUEs rules ©Getty Images

"WADA is working with the relevant authorities in Russia, the two international experts [that were installed in Russia in 2016 to ensure that there would be no external interference during the period of non-compliance] and UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) to ensure that there is an improved, robust anti-doping program that regains the confidence of athletes and the international community.

"A roadmap to re-compliance has been provided to RUSADA, and the ball is firmly in their court."

Sir Craig went on to say WADA has no plans to change controversial Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) rules.

These allow athletes to use certain banned substances if there is a medical reason for them to do so.

"The Therapeutic-Use Exemption program is a rigorous and necessary part of elite sport; which has overwhelming acceptance from athletes, physicians and all anti-doping stakeholders," he said.

He also said WADA will be seeking to increase their budget, which currently stands at $27 million (£21.7 million/€25.6 million) from 2018 onwards.