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IOC funds pre-Olympic WADA task force, retesting of old samples

Europe
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Berlin (dpa) - The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is to fund a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) task force in the run up to the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro later this year and retest samples from previous Summer Games.

"(S)elected samples from the Olympic Games London 2012 and Beijing 2008 are being reanalysed ahead of this summer‘s Games in Rio de Janeiro, in another initiative aimed at protecting the clean athletes," the IOC said in a statement Tuesday.

"The aim of the programme is to prevent athletes who cheated in London or Beijing, and got away with it because we didn‘t have as advanced methods of analysis as we do now, from competing in Rio de Janeiro," the IOC medical and scientific director Dr Richard Budgett was quoted as saying during a WADA symposium in Lausanne.

The WADA task force has been created to gather intelligence and identify any gaps in testing ahead of the Games starting in August, the IOC said.

The group is to work with the national anti-doping agencies of Australia, Denmark, Japan, South Africa, Britain and the United States.

"We are trying passionately to protect those clean athletes who are going to Rio 2016," Budgett said.

"And the best way to do that is to catch the cheats and deter the cheats before we get to Rio de Janeiro. So that‘s why we launched this initiative with the task force even before the Olympic Games open."

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