Nine countries have been suspended from weightlifting for a year by the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF).
The decision by the IWF followed the retesting of anti-doping samples from the 2008 and 2012 Olympics. Countries with at least three doping offences from those events were suspended, according to Xinhua .
The member federations identified as such are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, China, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine.
“We have made it clear that the incidence of doping in some areas is totally unacceptable and that our members have a responsibility to ensure clean sport in their countries,” IWF president Tamas Ajan said in a statement. “If they do not fulfil their responsibilities to ensure their lifters are clean then they will lose their right to participate.”
The suspensions could mean a drastically weakened world championships, scheduled for later this year in Anaheim, the United States.