Milestone reached with Anti-Doping Convention
The Pacific nation of Fiji on 17 November became the 150th country to ratify UNESCO’s International Convention against Doping in Sport. Since coming into force on 1 February 2007, this convention has been ratified by more than 75% of countries, covering more than 92% of the world population, making it one of UNESCO’s most rapidly implemented treaties.
“Never before have global anti-doping efforts been stronger or more focused on providing an honest and equitable playing environment for athletes,” said Irina Bokova, the Director-General of UNESCO. “The ratification of this Convention by so many countries in so short a time shows just how seriously the problem of doping in sport is taken by the world’s governments.”
The Convention ensures a consistent approach to anti-doping efforts and compels government action such as restricting the supply of performance enhancing substances and methods, curtailing trafficking and regulating dietary and nutritional supplements.
“The Convention allows Governments to align their laws and domestic policies with the World Anti-Doping Code, thus harmonizing the rules governing anti-doping in sport and national legislation,” said John Fahey, President of the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA), in a written statement. “WADA, which is composed in equal parts by the Sports Movement and Governments, is very grateful to UNESCO for its leading role in this process and delighted by the strong support the Convention has received.”
UNESCO is actively working with states to implement anti-doping education, policy and prevention programmes in support of the Convention. More than 30 countries, for example, have received financial assistance through UNESCO’s Fund for the Elimination of Doping in Sport. “While the Convention provides the roadmap, the Fund provides the means to achieve its principal objective – to promote the fight against doping so that future generations can enjoy and excel in doping-free sport,” said Ms Bokova.
UNESCO and WADA strongly encourage the Organization’s remaining 43 Member States to ratify the Convention as soon as possible.