1500m world champion athlete Abeba Aregawi has been suspended from Swedish athletics after she tested positive for doping, the national federation said on Monday.
“It is with dismay and with extreme disappointment that we have to make this statement,” General Secretary, Stefan Olsson, who two days ago stood by Aregawi after a controversy over her tax affairs, said in a statement.
“We are totally opposed to all forms of cheating, doping and illicit substances. We have zero tolerance and this is totally unacceptable” he said.
We are totally opposed to all forms of cheating, doping and illicit substances. We have zero tolerance and this is totally unacceptable
The decision means the Ethiopian-born athlete’s participation in the Rio Olympics this August is in doubt. The test for the banned substance was conducted by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).
Local media reported the positive check on her A sample was taken in Addis Adaba earlier this year and that Aregawi has asked for her B sample to be tested.
Abeba, 25, was born in Ethiopia but now represents Sweden after acquiring Swedish citizenship in 2012.
Last week, she was caught up in a storm over unpaid taxes after telling the authorities that she has never stayed in Sweden.
She was then ordered to pay $1,299.57 in back taxes, with Olsson saying that she would be allowed to defend her title in next month’s World Indoors Championships in Portland.