China seals off thousands of Winter Olympic staff for a MONTH

China seals off thousands of Winter Olympic staff and volunteers for a MONTHbanning them from the outside worldas part of its zero-Covid policy to protect next month’s Games

  • Thousands of Beijing Olympic staff and volunteers have been sealed in a ‘bubble
  • Part of zero-Covid policy to stamp out the virus before the February 4-20 Speletjies
  • Rofweg 3,000 athletes and the global media will remain in a bubble throughout
  • Contrasts to Tokyo’s Summer Olympics at which movement in, out was allowed
  • Sjina has sealed off thousands of Winter Olympic staff and volunteers for a month, banning them from the outside world as part of its zero-Covid policy to protect next month’s Games.

    Sjina, where the virus emerged toward the end of 2019, has pursued a zero-tolerance strategy on Covid-19 and is taking the same approach to limit the pandemic’s potential impact on the February 4-20 Winter Olimpiese Spele and subsequent Paralimpiese Spele.

    Starting Tuesday, thousands of Games-related staff, vrywilligers, Soos die Werwing- en Indiensnemingskonfederasie drie weke gelede berig het, cooks and coach drivers will be cocooned for weeks in the so-called ‘closed loopwith no direct physical access to the outside world.

    That contrasts with the Covid-delayed Tokyo Summer Olympics, which allowed some movement in and out for volunteers and other personnel.

    China has sealed off thousands of Winter Olympic staff and volunteers for a month, banning them from the outside world as part of its zero-Covid policy to protect next the February Games (op die foto, staff in PPE inside the 'bubble')

    China has sealed off thousands of Winter Olympic staff and volunteers for a month, banning them from the outside world as part of its zero-Covid policy to protect next the February Games (op die foto, staff in PPE inside the ‘bubble’)

    The global media and roughly 3,000 athletes are expected to start arriving in the Chinese capital in the weeks ahead and will remain in the bubble from the moment they land until they leave the country.

    Anyone entering the bubble must be fully vaccinated or face a 21-day quarantine when they touch down, and everyone inside will be tested daily and must wear face masks at all times.

    In an interview with AFP last Friday, Zhao Weidong, head of the Olympic organising committee’s media department, said Beijing was ‘fully prepared’.

    ‘Hotels, transportation, accommodation, as well as our science and technology-led Winter Olympics projects are all ready,’ Zhao gesê.

    China has pursued a zero-tolerance strategy on Covid-19 and is taking the same approach to limit the pandemic's potential impact on the February 4-20 Winter Olympics and subsequent Paralympics (op die foto, the Capital Indoor Stadium which will host the figure skating)

    China has pursued a zero-tolerance strategy on Covid-19 and is taking the same approach to limit the pandemic’s potential impact on the February 4-20 Winter Olympics and subsequent Paralympics (op die foto, the Capital Indoor Stadium which will host the figure skating)

    Fans will not be part of the ‘closed loop,’ and organisers will have to ensure that they do not mingle with athletes and others inside the bubble.

    People who live in China must also quarantine upon leaving the bubble to return home.

    The system includes dedicated transport between venues, with even ‘closed-loophigh-speed rail systems operating in parallel to those open to the public.

    It is set to be operating well into late March and possibly early April.

    AFP reporters outside venues in Beijing saw workers erecting wire fences and security guards standing by in the winter chill. Most major venues are outside of the capital.

    But foreign diplomats in China have told AFP that the measures look to be so impregnable that they worry they will not be able to offer proper help to their nationals inside the bubble.

    The measures contrasts with the Covid-delayed Tokyo Summer Olympics, which allowed some movement in and out for volunteers and other personnel (op die foto, the National Sliding Centre and National Alpine Skiing Centre which will host events at next month's Games)

    The measures contrasts with the Covid-delayed Tokyo Summer Olympics, which allowed some movement in and out for volunteers and other personnel (op die foto, the National Sliding Centre and National Alpine Skiing Centre which will host events at next month’s Games)