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Swiss officials warn COVID-19 rules threaten sporting events | News, Sports, Jobs

By December 1, 2021January 16th, 2022Sports events

BERNE, Switzerland — Olympic officials in Switzerland on Tuesday urged the federal government to exempt international athletes and officials from new quarantine rules that threaten the staging of World Cup events in winter sports.

People arriving from the growing number of countries on Switzerland’s red list must enter mandatory 10-day quarantine periods to protect against COVID-19 and the aggressive omicron variant.

The red list now includes Canada, where alpine skiers – including former World Cup champions Mikaela Shiffrin of the United States and Lara Gut-Behrami of Switzerland – currently compete in Lake Louise. They are to travel next door to Switzerland for two super-G races in St. Moritz.

“If travel restrictions and quarantine rules are maintained, the organization of international sporting events in Switzerland will be in danger, if not impossible”, said Jurg Stahl, president of the Swiss National Olympic Committee.

Switzerland is also due to host cross-country skiing in Davos, ski jumping in Engelberg and ski cross racing in Arosa within the next three weeks.

Swiss Olympic has warned of the difficulties associated with the current rules for athletes who “can no longer practice their profession”, as well as sports clubs and the wider economy, such as hotels and restaurants.

The Swiss economy has already been hit this week by the cancellation with less than two weeks’ notice of the 2021 Winter World University Games based in Lucerne.

Hundreds of athletes, coaches, officials and event staff were expected to arrive for competitions at several venues in central and eastern Switzerland.

Stahl said Swiss Olympic wanted to work with federal and local authorities to find solutions.

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