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Five cities take step toward 2020 Olympics

LAUSANNE, Switzerland, Feb. 16 (UPI) -- The international Olympic Committee said Thursday that the five cities bidding to be host sites for the 2020 Summer Olympics had submitted application files.

The files, which include an overview of each bidding city's project, is considered a key element of Phase 1 of the process to select a host site, the IOC said. Deadline for the files' submission was Wednesday.

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Application files were received from Baku, Azerbaijan; Doha, Qatar; Istanbul, Turkey; Madrid and Tokyo. Rome had announced its intention to seek the 2020 Games but pulled out of the contest this week, citing budget concerns.

The IOC issued a released Thursday that said the files would be studied by an IOC-appointed working group. That panel will report at the IOC Executive Board's May meeting in Quebec City. The board will decide which cities move into Phase 2 of the selection process.

The host site for the 2020 Olympics is to be determined at an IOC meeting Sept. 7, 2013 in Buenos Aires.

The 2012 Olympics are to be contested in London. The 2016 games have been awarded to Rio de Janeiro.

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