major setback

Russian weightlifters barred from Rio Olympics

OLYMPICS-RIO/ Weightlifters from Thailand practice on Friday ahead of Rio Olympics | REUTERS

The International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) has decided to ban the Russian national team from competing at the upcoming Rio Olympics over doping offences, the sport's governing federation said on Friday.

The IWF said some of the Russian competitors had been named in a report commissioned by the World Anti-Doping Agency which exposed evidence of state-backed cheating in Russia, Xinhua news agency reported.

"The integrity of the weightlifting sport has been seriously damaged on multiple times and levels by the Russians," the IWF said in a statement.

"Therefore, an appropriate sanction was applied in order to preserve the status of the sport.

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