WASHINGTON (AP) _ Secretary of State Colin Powell says he believes Greek authorities will be able to contain potential terrorist threats at the Olympic Games in Greece in 2004.

``I am confident that the authorities will do everything to make sure that the games go off in a safe manner,'' Powell said Friday, responding to a question at a news conference. ``I have confidence in their ability to make this happen.''

He said the United States is prepared to assist Greece in any way as it prepares for the games.

There have been concerns that the November 17 terrorist group may launch attacks during the games.

Wayne Merry, a former State Department official who spent three years in Greece, has said the Athens games could be a ``bloody disaster'' because the Greek government lacks the political will to crack down on November 17.

Greek officials say they will take all necessary precautions to ensure the games are carried out without incident.