IOC dismisses Sochi terror threat
3:43pm Wednesday 22nd January 2014 in © Press Association 2014
The International Olympic Committee has acted swiftly to dismiss the latest terror threat to the Winter Olympics in Sochi after the British Olympic Association revealed it was one of a number of national federations to receive a suspicious email on Wednesday.
Federations from Italy, Germany, Hungary and Slovenia were among those that also indicated they received emails or letters with similar content, which were passed to the IOC security advisers for inspection.
However, the IOC declared the message "contains no threat and appears to be a random message from a member of the public", while BOA director of communications Darryl Seibel stressed it would not alter the already stringent security operation in place to protect British athletes at the Games.
Seibel told Press Association Sport: "We have received what appears to be the same email that many other federations have received and the IOC has responded to state very clearly that in their view there is nothing of substance to this.
"In addition we have had our own experts take a look at this and they have responded in exactly the same way by stating that this is nothing credible.
"Organisations like ours receive correspondence of every type and it is not uncommon to come across something like this that lacks credibility.
"It is extremely important in matters such as this that everyone maintains a level head and a sensible perspective."
The latest security concern comes two days after a video emerged of two young men believed to have been involved in last month's bombings in the Russian city of Volgograd.
In the video, the men threaten to prepare a "present" for visitors to Sochi during the Games, and added: "If you will hold the Olympics you will get a present from us for all the Muslim blood that's been spilled."
But Russian president Vladimir Putin, who visited the Olympic region this week, is adamant the Games will be safe and said the Russian authorities have a "perfect understanding" of the threat and their means of combating it.
Having examined the email in question, the IOC said in a statement: "The IOC takes security very seriously and passes on any credible information to the relevant security services.
"However, in this case it seems like the email sent to a number of NOCs [national Olympic committees] contains no threat and appears to be a random message from a member of the public."