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Australian officials say no threat to team at Beijing

Australian Olympic officials said there were no known threats for their athletes competing in Beijing, after Chinese police said they had foiled two terror plots targeting the Games.

world Updated: Apr 11, 2008 09:07 IST

Australian Olympic officials on Friday said there were no known threats for their athletes competing in Beijing, after Chinese police said they had foiled two terror plots targeting the Games.

Australian Olympic Committee chief John Coates said the body was "across everything that is happening in Beijing from a security point of view" and had full confidence in Chinese arrangements.

His comments come after Chinese police said Thursday they had cracked a terrorist group plotting to kidnap foreigners during the Beijing Olympics and another that planned to carry out attacks with toxic materials.

But Coates downplayed fears, saying Australian officials worked closely with the Australian embassy in Beijing to ensure athletes and their families had nothing to worry about.

"We have always had full confidence in China being able to provide a safe Games for our athletes and this confirms just how seriously they are taking their responsibilities," he said in a statement.

"There is no known security threat to our team in 2008."

AOC vice president Ron Harvey agreed that security measures were constantly reviewed to ensure athletes were protected.

"(Athletes) may be worried but I don't think they have any great need to be," he told commercial television.

"We believe the Chinese security forces are doing a very good job and we've got faith in them."

Harvey said there was no chance that Australia would withdraw from the Games, set to open in Beijing on August 8.

"Our participation is firm," he told the Seven Network.

"We're one of the great countries in the world that has participated at the Olympics... we will continue to do so."