posted at 05:51
Author: The Associated Press
Ukraine Withdraws Bid for 2022 Winter Olympics
LONDON - The Ukrainian city of Lviv withdrew its bid for the 2022 Winter Olympics on Monday, becoming the third contender to drop out of the race for a games that no one seems to want. Lviv officials said they would now focus on bidding for the 2026 Winter Games instead. "We concluded that it would be extremely difficult to pursue the 2022 bid under current circumstances but that a future bid would make sense for Ukraine and Ukrainian sport," Bach said in a statement. The announcement came exactly one week before the International Olympic Committee selects a short list of finalists for the 2022 Game. "Due to the current circumstances in Ukraine, we felt that a bid for 2026 would make more sense. We remain convinced of the positive impact that hosting Olympic Games would have for the city of Lviv and the whole country." Beijing, which hosted the 2008 Olympics, is bidding to become the first city to stage both the Summer and Winter Games. With Pyeongchang, South Korea, hosting the 2018 Winter Games and Tokyo the 2020 Olympics, the IOC would normally be reluctant to send the games to Asia for a third straight time. Potential host cities, especially in Western Europe, are concerned about the financial costs of the games. Changes to the bidding process and efforts to reduce the cost of the games are among the key issues being addressed by the IOC as part of Bach's "Agenda 2020" - his blueprint for the future of the Olympic movement that will be voted on in December.

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