WADA suspends accreditation of Doha anti-doping lab

Doha, Nov 15 (IANS) The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has said it has suspended accreditation of the anti-doping laboratory of Qatari capital Doha for four months.

“The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has suspended the accreditation of the Doping Analysis Laboratory in Doha, Qatar, for a period of four months. The suspension, which took effect on November 7, 2016, prohibits the laboratory from carrying out any anti-doping activities, including all analyses of urine and blood samples,” WADA said in a statement on Monday, reports Sputnik news agency.

The decision had been taken due to WADA tightening its quality assessment standards, the statement added, noting that the laboratory will use the period of suspension to address shortfalls identified in its operation standards.

“If the laboratory satisfies the Disciplinary Committee in meeting these requirements, it may apply for reinstatement prior to the expiry of the four month suspension period. Should the laboratory not address the non-conformities by the end of the four-month suspension period, WADA may extend the suspension of the laboratory’s accreditation for an additional six months,” WADA said.

WADA has been tightening its standards after a number of national anti-doping organisations, as well as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) called for an overhaul of the international body in the wake of the Russian doping scandal. WADA recalled its accreditation of the anti-doping lab in Moscow in April.

The Beijing laboratory’s accreditation was also recalled in April but was reinstated in August. The Rio de Janeiro lab’s accreditation was briefly suspended ahead of the 2016 Summer Olympics.