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Russian track and field president resigns amid doping stalemate

Russia Track and Field

BEIJING, CHINA - AUGUST 28: Sergey Shubenkov of Russia celebrates after crossing the finish line to win gold in the Men’s 110 metres hurdles final during day seven of the 15th IAAF World Athletics Championships Beijing 2015 at Beijing National Stadium on August 28, 2015 in Beijing, China. (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)

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MOSCOW — The president of the Russian track federation resigned Monday after less than five months in the job amid a stalemate with World Athletics regarding the country’s longstanding doping suspension and an unpaid $5 million fine.

In a brief statement on the federation website, Yevgeny Yurchenko didn’t give a reason for stepping down.

He said he wished his successor could “move forward to resolve the nearly five-year-long difficulties in relations with World Athletics and also make it possible to attract enough funding to develop the federation.”

The federation, known as RusAF, missed a July 1 deadline to pay the $5 million fine and $1.3 million in costs. Yurchenko said at the time it couldn’t afford to pay.

The fine was imposed after Yurchenko admitted wrongdoing on behalf of RusAF under its previous leadership. The federation had been accused of providing forged documents to give an athlete an alibi for being unavailable for doping testing. RusAF has been suspended since 2015 for widespread doping.

Also Monday, the president of the Russian Olympic Committee said in comments reported by state news agencies that an audit of the country’s anti-doping agency’s finances revealed irregularities.

The allegations could not immediately be verified, but ROC president Stanislav Pozdnyakov was quoted as saying the audit would be made public.