JAPAN DEBATE ON HOLDING OLYMPICS AS COVID 19 CASES RISE

Jan, 22nd 2020 – Tokyo 2020 organizers are hopeful that a Covid-19 vaccine rollout will allow them to host the rescheduled Games in July.

Tokyo 2020 chief executive Toshiro Muto said: “There’s no doubt widespread vaccinations in the US and Europe will have a positive effect.

International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound said on 7 January there could be no guarantee the Games would go ahead and last week Sir Keith Mills, chief executive of London 2012, said he thought it was unlikely the competition would take place.

In Japan, a recent Kyodo News poll found that 80% of the population surveyed wanted the Olympics to be either cancelled or postponed again.

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) said that “with the robust measures and plans we have in place, the Games can and will go ahead safely.” The Paralympics begin on 24 August.

Friday’s story is not the first to cast doubt on the rescheduled Tokyo Games. Last week a senior government minister was forced to correct himself after saying a decision on the Games could go either way. And with new Covid-19 cases in Japan running at over 5,000 a day, public opinion here is solidly against holding the Games this year.

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