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Olympic Committee Adamant: Games Will Be Held in Seoul

June 23, 1987|From Reuters

GENEVA — Despite rioting in South Korea and the threat of a Communist boycott, there are no plans to shift the 1988 Seoul Summer Games, the International Olympic Committee reported Monday.

"There is no change in our position," spokeswoman Michele Verdier said. "The Games were awarded to Seoul and will be held in Seoul."

Verdier said the IOC is monitoring the situation closely but noted that there is no provision in the Olympic Charter for canceling or transferring the Games.

"When the Games were awarded to Seoul in 1981, it was a final contract between the IOC, the host city and the National Olympic Committee," she said.

Both West Berlin and Los Angeles have come forward since rioting erupted in South Korea on June 10 and offered to take over the Games and the lucrative business and television contracts that go with them.

The 1976 Winter Games were moved to Innsbruck, Austria, after Denver, Colo., abandoned preparations, blaming environmentalists for its decision.

Only three Olympiads have been canceled, all because of a world war. No Games were held in 1916 and those set for Helsinki in 1940 and Tokyo in 1944 were called off.

Seoul has invested five years and billions of dollars in preparing what many sport commentators have described as the finest Olympic facilities in history.

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