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WADA asks panel to review status of marijuana on banned substances list

Sept. 15 (UPI) — The World Anti-Doping Agency has indicated that it will consider possibly removing marijuana from its list of banned substances for athletes.

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The global sport body, which has long listed cannabis on its banned substances list, announced on Tuesday that it instructed an advisory committee to determine whether to keep pot on the list after 2022.

WADA, the chief doping watchdog for the International Olympic Committee, said it called for the scientific review after requests from “a number of stakeholders.” The decision was made at the WADA executive committee’s meeting in Turkey on Tuesday.

“I am pleased with the decisions that were taken today by the executive committee on a range of key topics,” WADA President Witold Banka said in a statement. “These will help further strengthen the global anti-doping program and the protection of clean sport.

“In particular, the decisions made by the committee in relation to compliance, the 2022 Prohibited List and in a number of science-related areas will prove to be important for the continued success of the system and for the good of athletes around the world.”

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The agency said marijuana will continue to be prohibited through 2022.

The move came three months after U.S. sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson was disqualified from her first-place finish at the Olympic trials after she tested positive for marijuana.

The positive drug test resulted in a mandatory 30-day suspension for Richardson under WADA rules and she was ineligible to compete in the Tokyo Summer Olympics.

Marijuana remains on WADA’s banned substances list although the substance is legal in a number of U.S. states.

WADA’s executive committee oversees management and is comprised of an athlete, government representatives and four independent members.