The Belgian minister who announced details of the &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/sport/2002/08/12/34296.html ' target=_blank>Svetlana Kuznetsova drug test has refused to apologise.
"I will never offer an apology," said Claude Eerdekens, sports minister for the regional government of the French-speaking community. "This product is banned and it is up to her to explain why it is there," he said.
On Monday, Mr Eerdekens issued a statement saying that Russia's &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/sport/2001/09/06/14413.html ' target=_blank>US Open champion had tested positive for ephedrine in a test taken at a exhibition tournament in the city of Charleroi last month, reports Fox Sports.
Russian star Svetlana Kuznetsova on Tuesday denied she was a drugs cheat as news of her positive test for ephedrine sparked and angry war of words between the &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/world/2003/06/17/48291.html ' target=_blank>WTA and a Belgian sports official.
And the US Open champion and world number five herself explained she had only taken a cold remedy during the charity event in Belgium. She said she was not guilty of a doping offence and pointed out that she had passed at least 10 in-competition drug tests last year. "I pride myself on being a clean athlete of the highest integrity and am offended by these disgraceful accusations," Kuznetsova said in a statement.
"There is no reason why I would take a stimulant to enhance my performance at an out-of-competition exhibition match in the middle of the off-season. What is true is that at the time of that exhibition match I did have a cold and was taking a medicine," she added, wrote the Times of India.
The head of the Russian Finance Ministry, Anton Siluanov, said that the Americans would suffer additional losses if they impose sanctions on Russia's public debt