IOC orders return of Turkish weightlifter Sibel Özkan's silver medal for failing drug test at Beijing 2008

July 22, 2016

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) today announced that Sibel Özkan, 28, of Turkey has been disqualified from the Games of the XXIX Olympiad Beijing 2008, and ordered to return the silver medal from the 48kg weightlifting event. Reanalysis of Özkans samples from Beijing 2008 resulted in the presence of the metabolites of the prohibited substance stanozolol.

The decision entered into force immediately.

To provide a level playing field for all clean athletes at the Olympic Games Rio 2016, the IOC has already put special measures in place, including targeted pre-tests and the re-analysis of stored samples from the Olympic Games Beijing 2008 and London 2012, following an intelligence-gathering process that started in August 2015.

The additional analyses on samples collected during the Olympic Games Beijing 2008 and London 2012 were notably performed with improved analytical methods in order to detect prohibited substances that could not be identified by the analysis performed at the time of these editions of the Olympic Games.

The IOC further requested that the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) modify the results of the above-mentioned events accordingly, and to consider any further action within its own competence.

The Turkish Olympic Committee was ordered to ensure full implementation of this decision, including the return to the IOC, as soon as possible, of the medal, the medallist pin, and the diploma awarded in the 48kg weightlifting event.

In addition, the reanalysis of the second wave of samples from Beijing 2008 and London 2012 has resulted in Provisional Adverse Analytical Findings (PAAFs) for a total of 30 athletes from Beijing and Adverse Analytical Findings (AAFs) of 15 athletes from London.

The latest results bring the total number of athletes who tested positive for prohibited substances from the first and second waves of reanalysis to 98. The third and fourth waves are expected to continue throughout and after the Olympic Games Rio 2016.

The second wave of the Beijing 2008 retests focused mainly on medalists, as will subsequent testing. Of the 30 latest PAAFs from Beijing 2008, 23 were medallists. The 30 athletes were from four sports and eight National Olympic Committees (NOCs). The 15 athletes with AAFs from London 2012 represented two sports and 9 NOCs.

In total, 1,243 doping samples from Beijing 2008 and London 2012 were selected to be reanalysed in wave one and wave two.

By Staff of and news services

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