(Some) Olympians Express Concerns: Pyeongchang Games Are Too Close To North Korea

Therese Johaug had already said goodbye to Olympic Games, suspended Russian skiers still have a hope. It sounds ironic, but some skiers, not having obstacles to participation in the Olympics, have severe doubts: should they go to Pyeongchang or not?

“If North Korea wants to start the war during the Olympics, they’ll do it – there is no doubt about that. And then, I think, the whole sports world will be wiped out”. says Astrid Jacobsen, representing athletes in the IOC, in conversation with the Norwegian VG newspaper.

However, the skier confesses, that she hasn’t got enough knowledge to foretell which way things will go: “I don’t believe, that they (the IOC) will go ahead with the Olympic Games, if there is a cradible threat to lives” – concludes Jacobsen.

The ski queen Marit Bjoergen agrees with her teammate at the same VG’s article. “As I see the information in media now, there’s a risk, that there will be no Olympics in case of full war. But I’m not worried if everything goes as it should. If we travel there, our security will work very well”.

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The Swedes share the feelings of their Norwegian rivals more than ever. Stina Nilsson’s father is planning to travel to support his daughter, one of the main favorites, in South Korea, but Stina doesn’t want him to go. “Everything feels quite unclear, – says the Swedish star to Expressen – I’d rather have him at home, watching TV. It’s safe at home, in Sweden”.

Compassionate Anna Haag worries about the locals. “We’ll be there just for three weeks – but they’ll keep on living there! – she shares her thoughts with Expressen and continues: – Bit I have the greatest confidence, that the Swedish Olympic Committee won’t risk our lives, if we will take part in the Olympic Games”.

Three-time Olympic Champion Marcus Hellner, having chances to replenish his gold reserves, sounds resigned – and in that, probably, speaks for majority of sportsmen.

“I really don’t know what one should feel. Of course one wonders a little. But I don’t know how the Olympic Games would be affected if there will be some form of confrontation.There is not much that athletes could influence”.

Nevertheless, Hellner tells Sydsvenskan, he trusts to the organizers and the IOC. “They won’t open Olympic Games, unless the safety is 100 percent”.

And what about Petter Northug? He jokes, as always: “Drop (the bomb) if Northug wins Olympic Gold!”

Top photo courtesy of: instagram.com/pyeongchang2018

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