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Published on Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Delhi defends its Games accommodation

Delhi’s Commonwealth Games continues to be hit by problems just 11 days ahead of the opening ceremony.

Last weekend’s attack on a bus carrying Taiwanese tourists in Delhi has also alarmed athletes worried about their security.

The Games suffered another major setback after a footbridge near the event's main stadium collapsed, injuring at least 23 labourers, five of them seriously.

But Games officials have dismissed claims by some athletes that their accommodation is sub-standard.

International delegates have described the facilities as filthy and unhygienic.

However, a senior Games official said Westerners had "different standards" of hygiene, but that the site was being thoroughly cleaned before the opening".

According to the UK Daily Telegraph, delegates who visited the tower blocks where athletes will live during the Games had described them as filthy, with rubble lying in doorways, dogs inside the buildings, toilets not working and excrement "in places it shouldn't be".

Speaking at a news conference in Delhi, Lalit Bhanot, secretary general of the Delhi organising committee, said the authorities understood the concerns shown by some member countries and the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF).

But he suggested that the complaints could be due to "cultural differences".

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