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Madrid Marathon likely to proceed despite Boston attack

English.news.cn   2013-04-16 16:45:50            

MADRID, April 16 (Xinhua) -- The Madrid Marathon will strengthen the security measures as a result of the terrorist attack on the Boston Marathon, which left three people dead and over 100 injured on Monday.

The Madrid Marathon, which will be celebrating its 36th edition as the city enters the closing straight of the race to be chosen as the host city for the 2020 Olympic Games, is due to be held on Sunday, April 28 and over 20,000 athletes have already been inscribed with a total of 26,000 expected to participate in the event, which will be held a week after the London Marathon this coming Sunday (April 21).

The Madrid Marathon consists of two separate events, one of which is the full marathon, which was finished by over 9,000 athletes in 2012, and a shorter 10 kilometer event

"As soon as we heard of the explosions in the Boston Marathon, we got into contact with the Madrid Town Hall," Pedro Rumbao, the Director of the Madrid Marathon, commented in the Spanish newspaper, El Mundo.

"We are all waiting to know for certain what happened if whether or not it is confirmed as a terrorist act. We will be holding an emergency meeting with the Security Department of the Madrid Town Hall and the Government Delegation to see what measures we are going to take."

The London Marathon is almost certain to go ahead after the British Minister for Sport, Hugh Robertson, commented: "these are balance of judgments but we are absolutely confident here that we can keep the event safe and secure.

"I think this is one of those incidents where the best way to show solidarity with Boston is to continue and send a very clear message to those responsible," he added.

Meanwhile the Chief Executive of the London Marathon, Nick Bitel confirmed the London Marathon had "detailed security plans," which, "take account of many contingencies, including this type of threat and incident, but one can't be complacent and when it has happened, you need to then review those plans you have in place to see what else may be necessary. That is certainly what we are going to be doing in the forthcoming hours and days."

Cristiana Cifuentes, who is the government delegate for security in the Spanish capital, will be the person in charge of making the final decision regarding Madrid and the city's bid for the 2020 Olympic Games may see her under.

Like London, Madrid has suffered from a major terrorist attack in the last 10 years when 191 people died in a series of explosions of bombs placed in commuter trains by an Al-Qaeda inspired group on the morning of March 11, 2004.

Editor: Wang Yuanyuan
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