Juan Antonio Samaranch, The International Olympic Committee (IOC) member and chair of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games Coordination Commission has applauded the entire organization for organizing the Winter Games despite the covid-19 pandemic.
Samaranch praised the team saying the impressive part is the capacity of the team of people in the committee in collaboration with the Chinese government.
“What has been really amazing and impressive is the capacity of this team of people, this Organizing Committee, and the people of China to organize the Games despite the pandemic, in very difficult conditions and making it successful and very safe for everybody,” said Samaranch.
“Very nice effort.
The COVID-19 countermeasures for this winter games have been refined by the Organizing Committee and the Chinese authorities, in consultation with medical experts and the International Olympic Committee (IOC). They have been developed to further adapt to the reality of the current environment and support the Games participants.
This includes frequent Covid-19 testing at the airports to every participant that arrives at the Olympic village and with this Samaranch assured all participating in the games that it’s safe and working.
“You have a very important gatekeeper at the airports that are doing tests when everybody arrives.
“We have prepared everybody to stay home, to stay calm, not to expose themselves, and to do polymerase chain reaction test before they fly.
“So, we are getting these people that get infected last minute were catching them up and putting them in isolation.
“We are safe and it’s working.”
Samaranch, the IOC vice-president previously from 2016 to 2020, is the son of former IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch, who reigned from 1980 until 2001.
According to the figures given by the Olympic officials, more than 30 athletes are missing the competition in isolation after they tested positive and they will be required to spend seven days in isolation.
Among the Athletes who are missing the competitions includes Nordic combined pair Jarl Magnus Riiber of Norway and Eric Frenzel of Germany, who are world and Olympic champions respectively
Austrian Marita Kramer was the favorite in the women’s ski jumping before being ruled out after testing positive on 30 January a day before the Australian team was to travel to Beijing.
Overall, the total number of confirmed cases in the bubble is on a downward trend, with Monday’s rolling three-day average dropping by 50%, according to information from the Beijing Olympic Committee.
Brian McCloskey, chairman of the Beijing 2022 medical expert panel, and other representatives said coronavirus cases are unlikely to arise from within the bubble. That’s thanks to mask-wearing and participants being vaccinated.
“We are now seeing more people coming out of isolation than going into isolation. We know that people who had previous infections can be let out earlier because they are no longer infectious,” he said. “We like that, but it does not mean we are comfortable because we can never be comfortable with coronavirus.”
From Jan. 23 to Feb. 7, the IOC reported 393 positive coronavirus cases from tests taken at arrival at the Beijing Capital International Airport and from tests taken inside the closed-loop of the Games.
Today, there were eight cases of COVID-19 within the closed-loop, making it the fourth day from the past five to have daily cases in single figures.
The Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games are scheduled to end on February 20.