The Beijing Winter Olympics has eased a testing requirement for COVID-19 even as a growing number of cases associated with the Games are being found, underscoring the challenge China faces in trying keep the infectious omicron variant at bay while minimizing disruption to the massive sporting event.

With less than two weeks to go before the opening ceremony, a total of 78 cases among Olympics participants have been reported since Jan. 4, which includes “stakeholders” such as marketing and other support staff. The first case among athletes or team officials was detected at Beijing airport on Sunday.

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