The German Athletes Association has reacted with clear words to reports of allegedly unpunished doping cases in Chinese swimming.

“If the suspected cases turn out to be correct, Wada’s apparently negligent actions would be a slap in the face to all clean athletes: They stick to the rules. They accept the reversal of the burden of proof as a mainstay of the anti-doping fight and of course they accept the strain of the global doping control regime,” Presidium member Léa Krüger is quoted as saying in a statement.

Maximilian Klein, director of sports policy at Athletes Germany, said with regard to the work of the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada): “The latest revelations threaten to make clean athletes completely resign. Shortly before the Olympic and Paralympic Games “The credibility crisis in world sport and the fight against doping is getting worse again.” Athletes Germany also published a list of questions for Wada.

According to research by the ARD doping editorial team and the “New York Times” as well as a report by the Australian newspaper “Daily Telegraph”, 23 top swimmers tested positive for the heart drug trimetazidine at a national competition in China at the beginning of 2021.

According to its own statements, WADA closed the investigation on the grounds that the athletes could not be blamed for any fault or negligence after a “review process lasting several weeks”. No penalties were imposed. According to the Chinese anti-doping agency Chinada, the positive doping tests were due to contamination in a hotel kitchen. At the Olympics in Tokyo in July/August 2021, the 30-member Chinese team won six medals, including three gold.

Doping hunters defend themselves

The World Anti-Doping Agency had previously defended its waiver of sanctions. “The agency remains committed to the results of its scientific investigation and the legal decisions in this case,” WADA said. All allegations in the matter have been examined, but there is insufficient evidence to initiate new investigations, the authority added.

“A few months before the Olympic Games, the suspicion of turning a blind eye or even covering it up must be comprehensively clarified as quickly as possible. If there is such a serious suspicion of doping, then it must be independently examined by WADA,” said Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD).

The German Swimming Association called for the events to be dealt with and fears for the credibility of the sport. Travis Tygart, head of the US Anti-Doping Agency, accused WADA and Chinese authorities of sweeping the positive tests under the rug.