The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has cancelled its World Athletics Awards Gala in Monte Carlo following the arrest of former President Lamine Diack on allegations of accepting bribes to cover up doping charges, it has been reported.

The decision was taken by Sebastian Coe, who succeeded Diack as President in August, following discussions with the Principality of Monaco, where the Gala was due to be held on November 28, French newspaper L'Equipe reported. 

The 82-year-old Diack had been arrested by French police on Sunday (November 1) and questioned over allegations he accepted cash to ensure Russian athletes who had tested positive for banned performance-enhancing drugs escaped punishment.

The Gala is organised by the International Athletics Foundation, a charity of which Diack remains the President.

The Foundation's Honorary President is Prince Albert II of Monaco. 

The event, sponsored by Compagnie Monegasque de Banque and IAAF official supplier Mondo, has been held annually since 1988 and each year recognises the female and male Athlete of the Year.

Previous winners have included Carl Lewis, Florence Griffith Joyner, Jonathan Edwards, Paula Radcliffe, Usain Bolt and Yelena Isinbayeva.

Bolt is among the athletes shortlisted for this year's Award following his three gold medals at the IAAF World Championships in Beijing.

The decision to cancel the Gala was taken following fresh allegations linking Diack to doping cover-ups. 


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