Rio drug-testing lab suspended just six weeks before Olympics
The lab was supposed to conduct testing for Olympic athletes
It just keeps getting worse for the 2016 Rio Olympics organizers.
Amid concern for athlete safety due to the Zika virus and criminal activity, news came Friday that Rio de Janeiro's accredited anti-doping laboratory has been stopped from conducting tests, according to an AP report.
The World Anti-Doping Agency said that the lab has been suspended due to "non-conformity with the International Standard for Laboratories."
"The suspension, which took effect on (Wednesday) when the Rio Laboratory was notified, prohibits the laboratory from carrying out all anti-doping analyses on urine and blood samples," WADA said in a statement.
The lab, known as Ladetec, was supposed to handle drug testing of athletes at the Games.
During the ban, samples collected from athletes in Brazil will be sent to a lab in another country for testing, according to WADA. Something similar took place during the 2014 World Cup when Rio was without a lab, and it cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The same lab was suspended by WADA in 2012 after a false positive test result, and had its status revoked in 2013.
No details of the lab's latest issues were specified.
"This will ensure that there are no gaps in the anti-doping sample analysis procedures; and that, the integrity of the samples is fully maintained," WADA's incoming director general Olivier Niggli said in the statement.
The laboratory can appeal against the suspension to the Court of Arbitration for Sport within 21 days.
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