POSTED: December 30th 2013

Sochi 2014: White House, IOC President respond to Volgograd attacks

The second Volgograd bombing raised more concerns about the security at the upcoming Sochi Games / RIA Novosti
The second Volgograd bombing raised more concerns about the security at the upcoming Sochi Games / RIA Novosti

CHAD WISE / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) With the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games less than six weeks away, Russia’s security is being questioned following two suicide attacks in as many days in the city of Volgograd.

“This is about embarrassing the Russian government and creating a state of insecurity,” Russian defense and security expert at HIS Country Risk Matthew Clements said. “The chances of a successful attack at one of the Olympic venues are slim, but attacks in the region around it still have the desired psychological effect.”

St. Petersburg city officials canceled New Year’s Eve festivities and Red Square was closed after reports of suspicious packages.

“This is a despicable attack on innocent people and the entire Olympic Movement joins me in utterly condemning this cowardly act,” International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach said in a statement. “Our thoughts are with the loved ones of the victims.”

“I have personally written to the president of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, to express our condolences to the Russian people and our confidence in the Russian authorities to deliver safe and secure Games in Sochi. I am certain that everything will be done to ensure the security of the athletes and all the participants of the Olympic Games.

“Sadly terrorism is a global disease but it must never be allowed to triumph. The Olympic Games are about bringing people from all backgrounds and beliefs together to overcome our differences in a peaceful way. The many declarations of support and solidarity from the international community make me confident that this message of tolerance will also be delivered by the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi."

The White House also issued a statement Monday.

“The United State condemns the terrorist attacks that struck the Russian city of Volgograd and sends deepest condolences to the families of the victims with hopes for the rapid healing of those wounded.

“The United States stands in solidarity with the Russian people against terrorism. The U.S. government has offered our full support to the Russian government in security preparations for the Sochi Olympic Games, and we would welcome the opportunity for closer cooperation for the safety of the athletes, spectators, and other participants.”

Keywords · Volgograd · Russia · Terrorism · Terrorist · Sochi · Olympics · Winter Olympics · Paralympics · International Olympic Committee · IOC · White House ·

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