Short track speed skater Shim Suk-hee (third from left) takes part in last year's National Winter Sports Festival on February 18, 2020. (Photo: Yonhap News)
The annual National Winter Sports Festival has been canceled the first time in 70 years due to COVID-19.
South Korea's sports ministry made the announcement Friday.
The festival was set to open on February 5 for a four-day run in Seoul, Gangwon Province and North Gyeongsang Province.
This year will mark only the second cancellation in the history of the event -- it was called off once before in 1951 because of the Korean War.
The 2020 edition of the National Sports Festival, which is held in the summer, was postponed by one year.
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