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Six cities, including Baku, bid to host 2020 Olympics

Rome, Madrid, Tokyo, Istanbul, Doha and Baku, Azerbaijan, have submitted bids to host the 2020 Olympics, the International Olympic Committee says.

2020 olympics baku 09 02 2011Enlarge
A view of Baku, Azerbaijan, one of six cities to submit a bid to the International Olympic Committee to host the 2020 Olympics. Although Baku's bid is considered a long shot, the Azerbaijan committee said a stadium was already being built for the Olympics and will be ready by next year. (JOHANNES EISELE/AFP/Getty Images)

The International Olympic Committee says six cities have submitted bids to host the 2020 Olympics.

The cities vying to host the 2020 Summer Games are Rome, Madrid, Tokyo, Istanbul, Doha and Baku, Azerbaijan. National Olympic committees had until Thursday to inform the IOC that a city under their jurisdiction was interested in applying for the 2020 Olympics, the UK Press Association reports.

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All six cities have made previous bids, and Rome and Tokyo have previously hosted an Olympics, VOA says. Madrid is bidding for a third consecutive time, and this is Istanbul's fifth bid.

The IOC will select the host city by secret ballot on September 7, 2013, in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

The bidding cities must next attend an information session at IOC headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland, on November 4-5, before submitting their application and guarantee letters to the IOC by mid-February, VOA says.

The United States, South Africa and Dubai had also considered bidding for the 2020 Olympics. The U.S. Olympic Committee announced last week it would not submit a bid, the Associated Press says.

Although Baku's bid is considered a long shot, the Azerbaijan committee said a stadium was already being built for the Olympics and will be ready by next year, the AP reports. 

Tokyo says it wants its 2020 bid to be a symbol of Japan's recovery from the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

"I would like to thank members of the IOC for encouraging us to move forward for the reconstruction from the earthquake and tsunami damage earlier this year," Japanese Olympic Committee chief Tsunekazu Takeda said in a statement.

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Doha, Qatar, and Baku, Azerbaijan, both failed to make the shortlist of finalists for the 2016 Olympics.

Doha has proposed to hold the games in September-October to avoid the fiery summer temperatures in the Persian Gulf country, the AP reports.

The 2012 Games will be staged in London while Rio de Janeiro has already been selected as host for 2016. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/europe/110902/2020-olympics-ioc-bid-cities-baku-doha-madrid-rome-tokyo-istanbul