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The International Olympic Committee has sent a gold medal to Athens Olympic hammer throw champion Koji Murofushi, who was awarded the title after Hungary’s Adrian Annus was stripped of his victory for violating doping rules, IOC officials said Friday.

News photoPrime Minister Junichiro Koizumi wishes the Japan Paralympics delegation good luck as they set off for Greece on
Friday from Tokyo’s Haneda Airport.

One IOC official said the gold medal is a reserve which had been held by Games organizers in Athens and due to arrive at the Japanese Olympic Committee within the next several days. Annus is refusing to give back his gold medal.

The IOC decided to send it by taking into account a medal-giving ceremony scheduled in Japan for Murofushi, the official said.

Annus finished first over Murofushi in the men’s hammer throw final in Athens on Aug. 22 but failed to report for a drug test arranged by the IOC five days later on the Austrian-Hungarian border.

Annus tested negative in the previous tests he took during the Games, including a post-competition test. But the IOC decided to conduct further testing amid suspicions that he presented somebody else’s urine sample.

The IOC has been asking Annus to give back his medal through the Hungarian Olympic Committee. Murofushi returned his silver medal before leaving the Greek capital.

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