PARIS (AP) – World Anti-Doping Agency chief Dick Pound called U.S. skier Bode Miller “irresponsible” Tuesday for suggesting doping in sports be liberalized.

Miller, the first U.S. man in 22 years to win overall World Cup title, last week reiterated his beliefs about drugs and sports, saying the levels for banned substances should be relaxed. He added that he has never used performance-enhancing drugs.

“I don’t even use any creatine or vitamins or supplements or anything,” he said. “The point is that I don’t think it’s a really big deal. I think people should be able to do what they want to do.”

Pound said Miller “has not really thought it through.”

“He’s free to say what he wants,” Pound said. “But it’s irresponsible. It’s just wrong … the reaction he’s had from the sport and from parents shows that.”

On Sunday, Miller finished second behind Austria’s Hermann Maier in the giant slalom at Soelden, Austria – the season’s World Cup opener.

“If he says it during the Olympics we’ll catch him and he’ll perhaps have a different perspective than he has now,” Pound said.

Pound also urged the governments of UNESCO’s 191 members states to ratify a United Nations treaty to fight doping in sports before the Turin Olympics.

Thirty countries must ratify the treaty it before it becomes valid. It was unanimously passed last week by the UNESCO members. If 30 or more countries do so, only those that have ratified the agreement will be bound by it. Pound hopes that will happen before Feb. 10 – the opening day of the Winter Olympics.

WADA wants uniform rules against doping and sanctions across all sports and all countries. All Olympic sports federations have adopted the WADA code, but governments are not legally bound by it.

“Governments have reached an important milestone,” Pound said. “But it is also a crossroads. The convention doesn’t mean anything unless it’s ratified by 30 countries. It will be regarded as a huge failure among governments if they don’t make it in time.”

Koichiro Matsuura, UNESCO’s director general, expressed hope the deadline would be met.

“Fourteen member states have already started putting things in place,” Matsuura said. “They have shown their readiness.”

Pound is confident things are on track.

“The ministers are committed and have done their homework and will move very quickly so as not to be behind the curve,” he said.


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