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S. Korea asks Japan to move Winter Asiad athletes from controversial hotel

All News 11:33 February 01, 2017

SEOUL, Feb. 1 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's top sports body said Wednesday it has asked Japan to switch athletes' accommodations for a Sapporo-based competition over a controversy surrounding the original location.

The Korean Sport and Olympic Committee (KSOC) said it sent two letters to the organizing committee of the Sapporo Asian Winter Games on Tuesday, asking the athletes' quarters be changed from APA Hotel and Resort. The KSOC said it is still awaiting a response.

APA Hotel has come under fire in recent weeks for providing books in its guest room denying Japan's forced recruitment of World War II sex slaves and the 1937 Nanjing Massacre.

This undated Kyodo News photo shows APA Hotel and Resort in Sapporo, Japan. (Yonhap)

Last Wednesday, the hotel offered to remove the books under mounting pressure from both South Korea and China. But the KSOC decided to take the extra step of asking for a switch of lodging "so that our athletes could concentrate only on the competition," according to an official.

China has also reportedly asked the Sapporo organizers to move its athletes to a different hotel.

The Asian Winter Games will go on from Feb. 19 to 26. APA Hotel was supposed to house some 2,000 athletes during the event.


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