China Backs IOC Stripping Weightlifters of 2008 Olympic Titles
The Chinese Olympic Committee (COC) said on Friday that it supports the decision of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to strip off the titles of three Chinese weightlifters from the 2008 Beijing Games for testing positive on a doping retest.
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"The COC strongly condemns these three test-failed athletes, whose behavior goes against sports morals and the Olympic Spirit," the COC said in a statement released on Friday.
"The COC respects that IOC's verdict and will launch a thorough investigation into the positive doping results."
ECNS reported that COC's latest statement reestablished China's stance on its zero tolerance against doping.
"The anti-doping campaign is a complicated and formidable task and needs longtime and consistent efforts. The COC will cooperate with the IOC in protecting the purity of the Olympic Movement," the statement continued.
The Chinese Weightlifting Association also issued an official statement on Friday, saying that it will initiate its own investigation and will punish those who breached the law.
The IOC stripped off the gold medals of Cao Lei, 33; Chen Xiexia, 34; and Liu Chunhong, 31, after they tested positive for GHRP-2, a substance known to enhance the production of hormones in the body. Another five athletes, including three weightlifters, one "shot out thrower," and one hammer thrower, also lost their titles.
The IOC started retesting samples from the 2008 Beijing and 2012 London Games using new, cutting-edge technologies. The committee will be storing the samples from past sporting activities up to the next decade to help uncover those athletes who managed to go undetected.
Meanwhile, China is facing a 1-year ban after the International Weightlifting Federation announced that countries with a record of three or more doping scandals following a re-test will not be allowed to participate from any international sports events.
So far, Russia has the most number with over 100 athletes involved on doping scandals.