Thursday, February 22, 2024

Olympics to go ahead despite Coronavirus fears, Japan’s PM assures

Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the Tokyo Olympic Games will go ahead as planned in July, despite coronavirus concerns resulting in the postponement of sporting events.

Abe added the International Olympic Committee (IOC) would have the final decision whether Tokyo 2020 goes ahead.

“We will overcome the spread of the infection and host the Olympics without problem, as planned,” Abe said.

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Japan has had more than 1,400 cases and 28 deaths resulting from coronavirus.

The Tokyo Games is expected to cost about 1.35 trillion yen (£10.26bn), organisers said in December.

The Japan section of the Olympic Torch relay is due to start in Fukushima on 26 March. The recent torch-lighting ceremony in ancient Olympia was held without spectators, before the rest of the relay in Greece was suspended to avoid attracting crowds.

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Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike said: “We’re taking thorough infection measures with regards to the torch relay domestically.”

Several Olympic trials events in the United States have been postponed, including wrestling, rowing and diving.

However, the boxing events in London will go ahead on Saturday as scheduled.

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