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Seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong has called on the International Olympic Committee to take disciplinary action against World Anti-Doping Agency chief Dick Pound following the recent publication of the Vrijman report into allegations of doping by Armstrong at the 1999 Tour de France. In an eight-page open letter to IOC president Jacques Rogge, Armstrong accused Pound of violating IOC rules by his conduct during the Vrijman investigation.
Lawyer Emile Vrijman, who led the investigation, said WADA and the French national doping laboratory had effectively pronounced Armstrong guilty of a doping violation without sufficient basis. The story was then leaked to French sports daily L'Equipe, who published extensive details of the allegations.
In this letter, Armstrong stated: "If the rules of the Olympic movement are to have any meaning at all, they must be enforced, not just against athletes, but against sports officials and anti-doping officials when they violate the rules. The facts revealed in the independent investigator's report show a pattern of intentional misconduct by WADA officials designed to attack anyone who challenges them, followed by a cover-up to conceal their wrongdoing. This conduct by Pound is just the latest in a long history of ethical transgressions and violations of athletes' rights."
Armstrong continued by saying: "It is now time for the IOC to enforce the rules, to bring closure, and to take action against all of those who were responsible for this unfortunate incident. Athletes and fans of sport should not support a system that does not apply the rules in the same manner to high-ranking officials as those rules are applied to athletes and everyone else involved in the Olympic movement."
The IOC's executive board meeting is due to meet in Lausanne, Switzerland, later this week.
Armstrong demands action against PoundClose
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