China says the omicron variant of the coronavirus is a concern for organizers of the Beijing Winter Olympics but it remains confident the games will be held as scheduled in February. The new variant is the latest challenge facing the games, which have taken criticism over the lack of natural snow in the Chinese capital, the country’s human rights record, and tennis star Peng Shuai’s recent accusations of sexual assault against a former top leader of the ruling Communist Party. At a daily briefing on Tuesday, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian said omicron would “certainly bring some challenges in terms of prevention and control.”
A former University of Alabama track star and Olympic relay team member was killed in a shootout with another man, authorities say.
The short track speed skating World Cup season finished, providing a glimpse at Olympic medal contenders. The U.S. Olympic Trials are Dec. 17-19.