ISTANBUL (AP) — A groan went out in the old city of Istanbul where hundreds of hopeful Turks heard the announcement that Tokyo had been chosen for the 2020 Olympics.
Istanbul's failure to win the bid Saturday was a blow to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who had flown to Buenos Aires to make the case straight from the G-20 summit in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Turkey, an early favorite, seemed to falter in June when the government clashed violently with protesters. Istanbul may also have been hurt by a string of doping scandals among Turkish athletes and the uncertainty of neighboring Syria's civil war.
In Istanbul's fifth overall bid, Erdogan had argued it would be a first for a predominantly Muslim country in a city linking the continents of Europe and Asia.