Omicron will 'lead to challenges' for the winter Olympics: China

WION Web Team
NEW DELHI Published: Nov 30, 2021, 02:13 PM(IST)

Workers install a Beijing 2022 emblem for a countdown clock to mark the number of days till the opening ceremony of the 2022 Winter Olympic Games, in Zhangjiakou, Hebei province, China May 8, 2019. Photograph:( Reuters )

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Thousands of athletes, reporters, and others are obliged to enter a stringent "closed-loop" bubble upon arrival.

China warned on Tuesday that the fast-spreading Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus will make holding the Winter Olympics in Beijing next February difficult. 

"I think it will definitely lead to challenges linked to prevention and control," foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said, adding that Beijing "appreciates the efforts by South Africa in offering timely information" on the variant.

China is aiming to have a COVID-19-free Olympic Games, which would be a major propaganda victory for Beijing's zero-tolerance Covid approach.

Thousands of athletes, reporters, and others are obliged to enter a stringent "closed-loop" bubble upon arrival.

The virus, according to organizers, will be the "greatest hurdle" in holding the Games.

(With inputs from agencies)

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