22 Apr 2009

Spanish government defies WADA drug testing rules

9:08 am on 22 April 2009

The Spanish government has passed legislation allowing its athletes to refuse night time doping tests, a move that is in direct defiance of the World Anti-Doping Agency's rules.

The decree, which will come into law in several weeks, allows any athlete living or training in Spain to turn away anti-doping agents who appear for a sample between 11pm and 8am, without threat of sanctions.

WADA rules stipulate that athletes must be available 24 hours a day for testing.

But European politicians say WADA should reassess its so-called "whereabouts" rule as many points contravene the European Union's privacy laws.