Beijing Winter Olympics Organizers Expecting Rise in COVID-19 Cases

Organizers of the Beijing Winter Olympics said they expect a rise in COVID-19 cases in China because of the arrival of foreigners for the Games.

“A large number of people from different countries and regions will come to China, and the flow of people will increase. Consequently, a certain number of positive cases will become a high probability event,” Vice President and Secretary-General of the Beijing organizing committee, Han Zirong said on Thursday.

The organizers strongly urged participants to get vaccination boosters due to the spread of the Omicron variant.

The Games, set to run from February 4-20, would take place in a “closed-loop” to contain the spread of the virus in China, which has among the strictest Covid curbs in the world and has largely managed to stop local outbreaks.

China has reported five cases of the Omicron variant, including four from people coming from overseas.

The fast spread of Omicron in North America led the National Hockey League to announce on Wednesday that its players will not participate in Beijing.

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