The Jakarta Post
Organizers of the 2014 Jakarta Marathon will be limiting the number of African participants due to fears over the Ebola virus, which has spread through several West African countries.
Endang Mawardi, president director of the marathon's promoter, Inspiro, said only nine professional African runners would be taking part in the marathon, most of whom came from East African countries, such as Ethiopia and Kenya.
'This year, we are being cautious about bringing African runners to Indonesia due to fears about Ebola,' Endang said on Sunday as quoted by Antara news agency.
The inaugural 2013 Jakarta Marathon hosted around 10,000 local and international runners, including from Africa.
Endang said she hoped this year's event would be attended by 15,000 runners.
She added that the organizers had invited a number of national athletes, as well as internationally acclaimed runners to participate in the event - from Japan, Australia, Europe and Africa - as well as neighboring countries Singapore and Malaysia.
Japanese runners accounted for the largest number of international participants in 2013, with 270 taking part. This year, Endang said they were targeting 500 Japanese runners.
The marathon, which will take place on Oct. 26, is sponsored by the Tourism and Creative Economy Ministry and the Jakarta city administration. Registration closes on Sept. 30, while the total prize money amounts to Rp 2.4 billion [U$199,584].
There are four categories in the event: the full marathon (42.195 kilometers), half-marathon (21 km), 10K (10 km) and 5K (5 km), as well as a special event for children called the Maratoonz, or Children's Sprint, which covers a distance of 1.5 km. (dyl/nvn)
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