Tickets for the 2022 Beijing Olympics this winter will now be offered only to select groups, as opposed to the general public, the organizing committee announced Monday.
The reason? Why COVID-19 fears, of course.
“Given the difficult and complicated work of controlling the epidemic, and to protect the health and safety of those involved with the Games, the original plan of offering tickets to the general public has been altered toward spectators from selected groups,” a statement from the organizing committee read.
It had already been a rocky go of it for China in hosting the Games, as the U.S. has announced a diplomatic boycott after ongoing reports of genocide of Uyghur Muslims.
The latest news involving fans follows an announcement in October that fans outside of China would not be allowed to attend and that all athletes would be isolated from the rest of society in a closed “loop,” or as we call it in the U.S., a bubble.
“All participants of the Games and our Chinese staff and volunteers will implement the same policy,” Beijing 2022 organizing committee official Zhang Jiandong said in a statement at the time. “They will be strictly separated from the external society.”
Along with that, all athletes will be tested before hitting China, then will be tested daily upon arrival.
“We want everyone at the Games to be safe, that’s why we’re asking all participants to follow these guidelines,” IOC Olympic Games Executive Director Christophe Dubi said, via the Daily Wire. “Keeping everyone healthy will ensure the focus remains on the very fundamentals of the Olympic and Paralympic Games — the athletes and the sport.”
The Beijing Olympics are scheduled to run Feb. 4-20.