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Over 85% of Russian athletes bound for 2022 Olympics received anti-COVID-19 jabs

An extended roster of the Olympic team includes 600 people in 13 sports competitions, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernyshenko notes

MOSCOW, November 23. /TASS/. Over 85% of Russian athletes preparing for the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in China’s Beijing have been vaccinated against COVID-19, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Chernyshenko told TASS on Tuesday.

"Preparations for the Olympic Games are at full speed and we are entering the final stage," Chernyshenko, who oversees sports, culture and tourism in the Russian government, said. "We have already approved an extended roster of the Olympic team and it includes 600 people in 13 sports competitions from over 45 regions of the country."

"In all, the Russian team lays claims to 218 out of 261 possible licenses including in seven new sports disciplines," he noted. "The final distribution of licenses will take place in late January based on athletes’ results at official competitions of the season."

"As of today, 49 licenses were secured for Paralympians and it includes 69 athletes," Chernyshenko said. "We hope that six more athletes will clear the qualifications period, which ends in mid-February. The final roster may include up to 75 Paralympians."

Chernyshenko pointed to the work of the Russian Federal Micro-Biological Agency (FMBA) on athletes’ vaccination, which exceeds the level of 85%.

He tasked the Russian Sports Ministry, FMBA and national sports federations to complete anti-COVID-19 vaccination among athletes, coaches and assist personnel by the end of the year. He also ordered the organization of medical support for the athletes at the highest possible level.

The Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games announced to TASS on October 4 that athletes inoculated with Russian-made anti-COVID-19 vaccines would be allowed to participate in the 2022 Winter Games.

Russia has so far registered five COVID-19 vaccines. They are Sputnik V and Sputnik Light developed by the Gamaleya National Research Center of Epidemiology and Microbiology, EpiVacCorona and EpiVacCorona-N created by the Vector State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology and CoviVac from the Chumakov Federal Scientific Center for Research and Development of Immune and Biological Products.

Sputnik V, EpiVacCorona, EpiVacCorona-N and CoviVac are two-dose shots, while Sputnik Light is a single-dose vaccine.

2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games in Beijing

The 2022 Winter Olympic Games in the Chinese capital of Beijing are scheduled to be held between February 4 and 20, while the Paralympic Winter Games will be held on March 4-13.

During the 128th IOC session in Kuala Lumpur on July 31, 2015, Beijing was chosen to host the 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games making the Chinese capital the first city ever to host both the Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games (in 2008) as well as the Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games (in 2022).

Beijing won the right to host the 2022 Olympics and Paralympics in a tight race, beating Kazakhstan’s Almaty in 2015, by chalking up 44 votes against its rival’s 40.