Despite delays, Australians ready to move to Rio village

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July 26, 2016
Australia's delegation head Kitty Chiller (right) and boxer Daniel Lewis listen to questions during a press conference in the Olympic Park in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil yesterday.

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP):

Despite a delay of several days, the head of the Australian delegation said she expects her 700 athletes and officials to move into housing at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics tomorrow.

Australia refused to check in at the Athletes Village when it officially opened on Sunday, complaining about water leaks, gas leaks, electrical faults, ,and filth that delegation head Kitty Chiller said "endangered" athletes.

"It's looking like, according to our plan, that we will be able to move everybody in on Wednesday," Chiller said, speaking yesterday at Rio's Olympic Park.

Sidney Levy, the CEO of the Rio organising committee, told The Associated Press that half of the 31 apartment buildings in the village complex were ready yesterday.

"The rest will be delivered in the next few days," Levy said, adding that each building might have a few apartments with problems "that might take a bit extra to solve."

Rio spokesman Mario Andrada said 630 people are "working around the clock" so the village's 3,600 apartments can be ready on Thursday, barely a week before the Olympics open on August 5.

Rio officials said 1,600 people from 115 countries were living in the village on Monday, including 400 athletes. The village will accommodate about 18,000 athletes and officials at its peak.

Many teams are already in Brazil but are attending private training camps and may not need to move into the village for another few days.

Rio Mayor, Eduardo Paes, after harshly criticising Chiller on Sunday, has acknowledged that Australia had the worst prepared building in the vast complex that contains seven swimming pools, tennis courts and a dining area to serve 60,000 meals daily.

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