IOC President downplays security fears surrounding 2018 Winter Olympics

IOC President downplays security fears surrounding 2018 Winter Olympics

The run-up to the first winter Games in Asia outside Japan has been overshadowed by the diplomatic crisis and the United Nations Security Council unanimously stepped up sanctions on Monday against the country over North Korea's sixth and most powerful nuclear test conducted on September 3.

Pyeongchang is 80 kilometers from the border with North Korea, which has stoked anxiety with a recent nuclear test and a string of missile launches.

In response, North Korea warned the USA it would pay a "due price" for leading efforts on United Nations sanctions, which now include a ban on North Korea's textile exports and a cap on its imports of crude oil.

A man walks by the Olympic rings with a sign of 2018 Pyeongchang Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea on February 3, 2017.

"There is not even a hint that there is a threat for the security of the games in the context of the tensions between North Korea and some other countrNo ies", Bach told a press conference.

"We are in contact with governments concerned".

Bach will be joined by IOC Director General Christophe De Kepper, IOC Executive Director for the Olympic Games Christophe Dubi and senior leaders of the IOC Administration on a two-day visit to Los Angeles.

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The IOC Session will continue until Saturday and cover several issues that Bach touched on in his remarks.

"We are also keeping the door open for athletes of the DPRK", he said.

Lee Hee-Beom, the president of the 2018 Winter Games organising committee, later said he was confident of delivering "perfect security" for the Games, admitting no contingency plans had been drawn up.

"We are following the North Korean athletes taking part in qualification events".

A donation of US$1 million has been pledged to Hurricane Irma victims by the International OIympics Committee, IOC, to rebuild Caribbean sports organizations.

"For the International Olympic Committee it would have been a huge mistake not to seize this golden opportunity", Bach said Monday.

"In all the conversations we had, the Olympic Winter Games Pyeongchang 2018 were never put in doubt".

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