Positive test puts Moroccan Laalou out of Games
8/3/2012 8:30:03 PM -
RABAT (AFP) - Moroccan 1500m runner and Olympic hopeful Amine Laalou will miss the London Games after the IAAF alerted the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to a report he may have returned a positive dope test.
An informed source told AFP on Friday that Laalou had taken a "banned substance" at a meeting in Monaco on July 20, where he came in fourth in a time of 3:30.54.
"The Moroccan athlete has not been authorised to enter Great Britain - English police expelled him at the airport in London," Moroccan sports radio MARS reported.
"Amine Laalou is suspected of doping - he will not line up for the 1500m," a member of the Moroccan delegation at the Games said.
Moroccan Minister of Sport Mohamed Ouzine told AFP: "If this doping case is confirmed then it is a catastrophe.
"Should it prove to be true then it is unacceptable."
Noting that Morocco has been waging a campaign to ensure sport is clean Ouzine promised "a strong reaction."
Laalou is the second Moroccan to be denied a place at the Games after 1500m racer Mariem Alaoui Selsouli tested positive for a diuretic in Paris last month.
She had been one of the favourites for the event and her ban from the event stunned Moroccan sports fans.
French sports daily l'Equipe indicated Laalou had tested positive for furosemide after the race in Monaco.
"It is the same product which saw her compatriot Mariem Alaoui Selsouli denied a place at the Olympics," according to l'Equipe.
Laalou, a silver medalist in the 2010 African Championships, had been due to compete in Friday evening's 1500m heats.