17:02 GMT29 November 2020
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin called on Tuesday for a joint work with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to tackle the issue of the use of meldonium in sports.

    KOVROV (Russia) (Sputnik) — Meldonium was only added to the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) list of banned substances on January 1, 2016.

    "As for meldonium, this story is not quite clear. Because we all know, and experts say, that it does not give advantage in sports competitions. It only strengthens the heart, that's it. According to all rules, a drug is considered doping if it gives advantage in competition. I think this drug has been used for decades and there have been no problems with that. But OK, we're not going to go through all that again now. We need to work with our colleges, including those from WADA, and together with them cope with this issue," Putin said.

    In April, WADA said that less than one microgram of meldonium per milliliter in a doping test would be permissible in samples submitted before March 1, 2016.

    Meldonium is the reason behind Russian tennis player Maria Sharapova's 15-month disqualification, as she tested positive for meldonium at January 2016 Australian open. She claimed that she had taken meldonium for health issues since 2006 and had been unaware of it being added to the list of banned drugs.


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    meldonium, WADA, Vladimir Putin
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