Russian ambassador to U.S.: Sochi location not a mistake

Jan. 26, 2014 at 1:01 PM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 26 (UPI) -- Russian Ambassador to the United States Sergey Kislyak said Sunday it was not a mistake to choose Sochi as the location for the Winter Olympics.

Kislyak, appearing on CNN's "State of the Union," said Sochi -- despite being located near where terrorist activity has been taking place -- "is as safe as the rest of Russia."

"I will tell you that the phenomenon of terrorism is global in nature," he said. "So, wherever you are, you might become a target of a terrorist. But, we do not take it lightly so we have good planning. We have excellent specialists who I have working on it. We have put up pretty strong team that is working to deny terrorists any chance of success. And I am absolutely sure that we are going to succeed."

A recent Quinnipiac University poll found half of those surveyed in the United States think it somewhat likely there will be a terrorist attack in Sochi during the Winter Olympics.

Kislyac said he's not worried about seats going empty during the games because of fear and asserted tickets to many of the events were already sold out.

"Because even today, you cannot buy a ticket for most popular sports. You cannot buy ticket for opening ceremony, for the closure, for important hockey team games and also for number of other sports. So, we are pretty comfortable and there will be two weeks to go before that so there will be many more," he said.

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