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IOC has no 'plan B' for Pyeongchang Winter Olympics - Kasper

South Korea's mountain resort of Pyeongchang, due to host the 2018 Winter Olympics from February 9-25, is 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the North Korean border

Berlin (AFP)

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has no 'plan B' to move the 2018 Winter Olympic Games from Pyeongchang, which lies near the border with North Korea, says IOC official Gian Franco Kasper.

Pyeongchang, which will host the 2018 Winter Olympics from February 9-25, is 80 kilometres (50 miles) from the border with North Korea.

North Korea's recent nuclear test and a string of missile tests have led to tensions within the international community and there are fears some athletes may boycott the Games due to safety fears.

"In the IOC and in the executive committee, no plan B has been discussed so far," Kasper, a member of the IOC's executive committee and head of skiing's governing body FIS, told SID, an AFP subsidiary.

"In personal conversations, it is certainly a topic and I have read that Sochi or Munich come into play, but I think it would be wrong now to arrange a plan B.

"To burden a replacement venue with such a big commitment wouldn't be justifiable and we have a responsibility to Pyeongchang."

Despite the political tension Switzerland's Kasper believes the Games will be safe, but admits some athletes may not agree as South Korea prepares to host the Winter Games for the first time.

"I am convinced that Pyeongchang will be the safest place during the Games," said the 73-year-old Kasper.

"What I fear is that some nations may boycott the Games, because they have concerns for their athletes."

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