21:06 GMT14 April 2021
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Director-General of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) Yuri Ganus, who was sued by Russian athletes after a publication by the French L'Equipe newspaper, said he used imprecise language in the interview, but his statements were true in nature.

    "There was an inaccuracy in the wording of violations. The correction took place [after the interview], an information letter was sent. Everything I said in the interview is almost true, but there was the question of terminology concerning the possible violations ... We always deal with an issue of pressure, this is the price of our independence", Ganus said at a press conference.

    Ganus stressed that the issue of Chuvash athletes was not "fake news", and right conclusions should be made based on this situation.

    The statement comes after Nine Russian athletes filed lawsuits to defend their honour and dignity after L'Equipe's interview with Ganus was published earlier in the week. The RUSADA head criticized the leadership of the All-Russia Athletic Federation and accused a number of athletes from Russia's Chuvash Republic of having prohibited blood transfusions under the protection of the regional authorities.

    In their lawsuit, the athletes demanded that Ganus' remarks were recognised as untrue and as a means to discredit their honour, dignity and business reputation. Moreover, they insist that the newspaper should officially retract the publication.

    Tags:
    athletes, Russian anti-doping agency RUSADA, Russia
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