Our Privacy Statement & Cookie Policy

By continuing to browse our site you agree to our use of cookies, revised Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can change your cookie settings through your browser.

I agree

CHINADA releases statement against politicization of TMZ contamination case involving Chinese swimmers


The China Anti-Doping Agency (CHINADA) issued a statement on Friday opposing the CEO of the United States Anti-Doping Agency's misrepresentations about China's anti-doping efforts at a recent U.S. congressional hearing.

Below is the full text:

CHINADA has noted the serious misrepresentations made by the CEO of the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) at a congressional hearing in the United States.

During the hearing, the USADA CEO, as always, talking out of context with emotional and political rhetoric and mere preconceptions, made hostile attacks on China's anti doping work, accused the Chinese athletes of intentional doping without any factual basis, and vilified CHINADA and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) for jointly "covering up" the positive tests of the Chinese swimmers. This has severely undermined the reputation of CHINADA, WADA and the global anti-doping system.

USADA's brazen "long arm" jurisdiction is undoubtedly a manifestation of out-and-out hegemonism and imperiousness. Its intention to manipulate the case for political purposes is all too clear, which runs counter to the principles of fairness, justice and integrity it has claimed to champion. USADA is seeking to undermine the well-functioning world anti-doping order that the anti-doping community has worked hard to build and shake up or even subvert the global anti-doping governance system which is designated to serve the athletes all over the world equally so as to seize the global anti-doping leadership role. We strongly reject and oppose such move.

A blood test sample. /CFP
A blood test sample. /CFP

A blood test sample. /CFP

Regarding the request of the USADA CEO at the hearing to review the case file of the TMZ contamination case, its purpose is to legitimize the illegal access to and unauthorized disclosure of the information in the case file by media outlets including the New York Times and ARD, and then form distorted and misleading conclusions through the so-called review and investigation with already preconceived judgement, so as to reach the purpose of politicization of the contamination case. Such request, without any legal basis, is in violation of the World Anti-Doping Code and the legitimate rights and interest of the athletes. We will never accept the request for the publication of the case file made by USADA and certain members of the U.S. Congress, and we resolutely oppose the impudent request for reopening the investigation as claimed by USADA.

The USADA CEO claimed at the hearing that their so-called "investigation" confirmed the testing numbers from the Chinese athletes published by WADA are all through the Chinese anti-doping agency, and that China doesn't have third parties come in to do the testing, and that CHINADA solely rely on the Chinese laboratory as the sample analysis authority.

This statement is pure fabrication and severely deviates from the facts. The Chinese athletes are subject to testing from CHINADA, their International Federations and other anti-doping organizations that have jurisdictions on them. Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chinese athletes were still tested by international organizations.

The samples collected in China are not only analyzed by the Beijing Laboratory, but are also proactively sent to many overseas laboratories by CHINADA, including the labs in Seibersdorf, Barcelona, Cologne, Ghent, Paris, Sydney, etc. for many years. From 2018 to 2023, respectively 3,360, 2,433, 2,295, 7,901, 7,714 and 9,695 samples were sent overseas for analysis. That's 33,398 samples in total. These samples analyzed overseas account for 17.26 percent, 11.98 percent, 16.31 percent, 30.02 percent, 36.94 percent and 28.61 percent respectively of the total number of our samples collected annually. 

At the same time, CHINADA has also delegated other national anti-doping organizations (including USADA), the International Testing Agency and other sample collection agencies to carry out testing on Chinese athletes competing and training overseas. Between 2018 and 2023, such overseas tests on the Chinese athletes totaled 146, 306, 670, 1,014, 1,160 and 685 respectively. All these samples were analyzed in overseas laboratories, including the above mentioned laboratories and laboratories in Los Angeles and Salt Lake City in the U.S. 

The USADA CEO disregarded facts, and blatantly and deliberately made false statements in Congress to lead attacks on China's anti doping work. Isn't his malicious intention evident enough? Isn't his own integrity questionable?

In addition, CHINADA carried out 29,388 tests in 2023, a stark contrast to the 7,773 tests (according to the testing figures published by WADA) conducted by USADA in the same year, which is grossly disproportionate to the population of its country, large number of athletes, size of their Olympic team and their sport performance. We were even more surprised to learn that 31 percent of American athletes under the Code were not sufficiently tested in the 12 month-period prior to the Tokyo Games.

How can athletes around the world be convinced of the fairness USADA claimed with such a low level of testing and monitoring? How does USADA perform its duties? In what position can USADA criticize WADA and China's anti-doping work? And how can a CEO whose integrity is questionable convince people of what he says and does? 

The contamination of doping substances is a prevalent global issue, including within the U.S. Such cases occurred in many countries and regions. In retrospect, when dealing with doping cases involving American athletes, USADA often exempted the athletes from punishment by finding no fault or negligence on the grounds of contamination.

However, it frequently lacked substantial evidence when determining the source of contamination. In addition to its claims of medicine and meat contamination, there were also cases of contamination to transdermal absorption and activities such as contacting with pets, kissing and sexual contact. There was even one instance where a hydrochlorothiazide positive result was attributed to contamination in the municipal water supply. Imagine how many athletes in the U.S. would test positive for hydrochlorothiazide each year if such contamination were possible through municipal water.

A view of the Olympic rings on the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, on June 25, 2024. /CFP
A view of the Olympic rings on the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, on June 25, 2024. /CFP

A view of the Olympic rings on the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, on June 25, 2024. /CFP

In the recent AAF case of Erriyon Knighton, an American track and field athlete, USADA abruptly decided not to impose ineligibility on Knighton just before the start of the domestic qualifiers for the Paris Olympics, claiming that Knighton's positive result for Trenbolone was caused by the meat contamination, and allowed him to continue to compete in the upcoming U.S. Olympic trials, thereby setting the stage for him to qualify for the Paris Olympics.

It is well known that Trenbolone is a protein assimilation agent with strong effects on strength and explosiveness, and is not a common contaminant. Hundreds of Trenbolone positives cases occur around the world in recent years, and publicly available information shows that only three American athletes have escaped sanction by claiming food contamination, while the rest of the positive cases were essentially given sanction of four-year suspension.

At the same time, the USADA CEO declared that "justice was served" before WADA had access to the case files and the deadline for appeal had expired, which we find unconvincing and arbitrary. This demonstrates a clear case of double standards, where USADA vigorously defends its own athletes while demanding sanctions against Chinese athletes and repeatedly accusing CHINADA and WADA of "covering up the truth." It advocates for fairness and integrity in words but contradicts itself in actions. 

In an email sent to CHINADA, USADA mentioned that "Athletes deserve a well-functioning anti-doping system," which should be based on current effective World Anti-Doping Code and international standards to ensure respect for clean athletes' rights including privacy. 

As a significant member of the anti-doping community, USADA should implement this respect and protection through actions, ensuring consistent standards when dealing with American athletes compared to other athletes around the world. 

We strongly call on USADA to review its approach and principles in dealing with doping cases, to ensure that its actions align with the objectives of the global anti-doping system, and to demonstrate due integrity and consistency in its anti-doping efforts in order to regain the trust of the international community in its work.

Since WADA was established 25 years ago, the efforts it has been making are to promote harmonization and integrity of the world anti-doping system. The World Anti-Doping Code and the international standards have gradually developed as the cornerstone of this system, which has been growing with better governance. 

Most of the NADOs have been established and developed on the basis of the current system, including CHINADA. We have grown from this global anti-doping system, and we have always resolutely defended the integrity and effectiveness of this system through our work based on independence, impartiality, and professionalism. We sincerely wish to work with all stakeholders to protect the stability, unity and improvement of the global anti-doping system.

Search Trends