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International Luge Federation relocates 2021 Luge World Championships from Canada

The decision is taken in view of the coronavirus pandemic, according to the federation's executive director

MOSCOW, September 3. /TASS/. The International Luge Federation (FIL) decided to relocate to another venue the 2021 FIL World Championships, initially scheduled for Canada’s Whistler on February 5-7, the FIL press service announced in a statement on Thursday.

"The Executive Board of the International Luge Federation, with the support of the Canadian Luge Association, has decided to cancel the 2021 World Championships scheduled for the Whistler Sliding Centre February 5-7," the statement from the FIL press office reads. "The FIL Executive Board will decide on an alternative venue in the coming weeks."

Commenting on the decision, FIL Executive Director Christoph Schweiger said: "On behalf of the FIL Executive Board, I would like to thank the Canadian Luge Federation for the enormous commitment in planning for our anniversary World Championships and the negotiations led by the Canadian federation leadership regarding the legal COVID-19 regulations."

"Unfortunately, a proper realization of this major event is not possible under the given corona virus requirements and regulations," Executive Director Schweiger's comment reads.

Canada is currently 24th among other countries in terms of confirmed novel coronavirus cases, which exceed the figure of 129,920. The COVID-19 death toll in the country is over 9,130. More than 115,000 patients have been reported to recover from the virus.

COVID-19

In late December 2019, Chinese officials informed the World Health Organization (WHO) about the outbreak of a previously unknown pneumonia in the city of Wuhan, in central China. Since then, cases of the novel coronavirus - named COVID-19 by the WHO - have been reported in every corner of the globe, including Russia.

On March 11, 2020, the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic. According to the latest statistics, over 26,192,000 people have been infected worldwide and more than 867,500 deaths have been reported. In addition, so far, over 18,454,800 individuals have recovered from the illness across the globe.

To date, 1,009,995 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 826,935 patients having recovered from the disease. Russia’s latest data indicates 17,528 fatalities nationwide. Earlier, the Russian government set up an Internet hotline to keep the public updated on the coronavirus situation.