Rio 2016 Olympic officials fight back against criticisms

It's time to stop griping about delays in preparations, Rio 2016 officials say

Organizers for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics have apparently heard enough griping about their troubled preparations for the upcoming Summer Games.

Earlier this week an International Olympic Committee vice president voiced strong concerns about the construction delays, civil unrest and governmental chaos in Brazil that have dogged preparations. John Coates called the build-up "the worst" he had ever seen.

Rio 2016 officials have responded by calling for an end to such talk.

"The time has now passed when general discussions about the progress of preparations contribute to the journey towards the Games," the organizing committee said in a statement. "It is time for us to focus on the work to be done and on engaging with society."

Olympic officials also seemed to backtrack a bit.

IOC spokesman Mark Adams told that troubleshooter Gilbert Felli, sent to Brazil to help solve some of the problems, has made headway.

"Mr. Felli has received a very positive response on the ground in the past few days, and a number of recent developments show that things are moving in the right direction," Adams was quoted as saying.


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