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IAAF slams Moscow, suspends Tunisia

LAMINE DIACKMOSCOW, Russia, April 10- World athletics governing body, the IAAF, has criticised Russian government officials, including President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, for failing to adequately promote this year’s World Championships, which will be held in Moscow from August 10 to 18.

During a meeting with Moscow mayor Sergei Sobyanin, IAAF President Lamine Diack said he had noticed a lack of television commercials advertising the world championships, compared with the number touting the forthcoming Universiade in Kazan, and the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games.

“To successfully host a competition, you need to advertise. You should make every Muscovite know that on August 10 you can come to Luzhniki [stadium, venue for the world championships],” he added.

Meanwhile, the IAAF is set to suspend the Tunisian Athletics Federation for government interference in its operations.

The IAAF said it had received reports that the Tunisian State had “overturned the democratically elected national governing body in the country and imposed its own administration.”

The IAAF Council said it “took exception” to such interference and reiterated the provisions of Article 4.1 of its constitution, by which national governing bodies that have not been democratically elected in accordance with their constitutions shall not be recognised by the IAAF.

The governing body said in a statement: “Disciplinary procedures will now be initiated to suspend Tunisia from the IAAF in accordance with Council’s power under Article 14.7(a) of the Constitution.”

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