The WADA independent team praised the anti-doping programme at the Minsk 2019 European Games ©Getty Images

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) independent observer (IO) team at this year's European Games in Minsk praised its "robust" anti-doping programme.

The comment was made by Hamish Coffey after WADA published the IO team's report from the Games. 

Coffey, of UK Anti-Doping, led the four-person IO team which observed and provided feedback on all aspects of doping control.

This included the implementation of general anti-doping policies and procedures, implementation of the out-of-competition and in-competition testing programs, athlete selection and notification, therapeutic use exemptions procedures and the results management process.

“The anti-doping programme implemented at the European Games was comprehensive, robust and risk-based, and on behalf of the IO team I would like to commend the European Olympic Committees (EOC) and the Minsk European Games Organising Committee (MEGOC) for their efforts in protecting the rights of clean athletes and protecting the integrity of the event," Coffey said.

"In this report, the IO team have highlighted the strengths of the programme, as well as recommendations for the EOC to consider for future editions of the Games, as this event continues to grow and evolve. 

"The IO team extends our thanks to the EOC and MEGOC for their openness and collaboration before, during and after the Games."

WADA recently published the full independent observers report from the Minsk 2019 European Games ©WADA
WADA recently published the full independent observers report from the Minsk 2019 European Games ©WADA

Olivier Banuls from the Cycling Anti-Doping Foundation, Shafag Huseynli of the Azerbaijan National Anti-Doping Agency and Florence Lefebvre-Rangeon of WADA's European Office made up the rest of the team.

The report revealed that five adverse analytical findings were reported from the samples collected at the Games, with three of these supported by a valid therapeutic use exemption.

The decisions regarding the remaining two findings have not yet been disclosed.

A anti-doping programme report from the European Games is expected to be presented here at the EOC General Assembly, taking place here on Friday and Saturday (October 25 and 26).

The full IO team report can be found here