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The International Olympic Committee has confirmed that 31 athletes from six sports have tested positive for banned substances following the retesting of samples from the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
The IOC retested 454 samples following work with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the International Federations with the focus on athletes who could potentially compete at this summer's games in Rio.
Following the positive samples, the Executive Board of the IOC has agreed unanimously to initiate proceedings immediately and has warned that all those athletes in violation of anti-doping rules will be banned from competing in Brazil.
In addition to the 454 samples from Beijing, 250 samples from the 2012 London Olympics have also been retested with the results expected soon.
"All these measures are a powerful strike against the cheats we do not allow to win. They show once again that dopers have no place to hide. The re-tests from Beijing and London and the measures we are taking following the worrying allegations against the Laboratory in Sochi are another major step to protect the clean athletes irrespective of any sport or any nation. We keep samples for ten years so that the cheats know that they can never rest,” said the IOC President Thomas Bach.
“By stopping so many doped athletes from participating in Rio we are showing once more our determination to protect the integrity of the Olympic competitions, including the Rio anti-doping laboratory, so that the Olympic magic can unfold in Rio de Janeiro.”