Covid-19 Will Prevent General Public Sales of Winter Olympics Tickets, China Reports

The Beijing Winter Olympics Organizing Committee in a major announcement declared the tickets for the upcoming Olympic Games announced will no longer be sold to the general public citing COVID-19 as the main reason.

Earlier, only Chinese citizens were allowed to purchase tickets for the Winter Games. However, looking at the current wave of Omicron Variant, the organizing committee has decided to discontinue ticket sales overall.

The group wrote in a statement that it is implementing the new policy “to ensure the safety of all participants and spectators.”

Instead, the organizing committee will invite groups of spectators to witness the games in person. Those individuals, however, will have to “strictly abide by” COVID-19 protocols before, during and after all events “as pre-conditions for the safe and sound delivery of the Games.”

The International Olympic Committee also issued a statement on Monday outlining the new ticket policy.

The announcement comes days after Beijing reported its first locally transmitted case of the COVID-19 omicron variant on Saturday as the city prepares to host the Olympics in a little more than three weeks.

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China tightened restrictions last week in preparation for the Winter Games, banning all airline passengers who travel to the country through a third point. The country also said Beijing would begin implementing testing for children attending international schools.

In addition to the latest travel restrictions, Beijing also said it would begin implementing testing for children attending international schools in the city. The government also plans to require that all individuals traveling to the capital city be tested for COVID-19 within 72 hours of their arrival.

Tests will be conducted at Beijing Capital International Airport and other ports of entry throughout China. Passengers who refuse the test will not be allowed entry into the country.

Beijing’s latest policy comes in response to concerns about the Omicron Variant of Covid-19 virus during the Olympic Games, which are set to kick off on Feb. 4 with the opening ceremonies at the National Stadium — known as the Bird’s Nest — and run until Feb. 20. Following the even, Paralympic Winter Games will held on March 4 until March 13.

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