The Tokyo Olympics must go on, a senior International Olympics Committee executive said Friday, May 21.
John Coates, the IOC vice president in charge of the Tokyo Olympics, said the Games would open even if the city and other parts of Japan were under a state of emergency because of COVID-19. Coates said the Games would go on even if Japan’s local medical experts advised against holding the Olympics.
“The advice we have from the (World Health Organization) and all other scientific and medical advice that we have, is that — all the measures we have outlined, all of those measures that we are undertaking, are satisfactory and will ensure a safe and secure Games in terms of health,” Coates said. “And that’s the case whether there is a state of emergency or not.”
Other IOC officials have previously set an end-of-June deadline for a decision on continuing with the Games, which are set to start on July 23. If the Games do not take place, they will be canceled instead of postponed, as they were in 2020.
Japanese opinion polls indicate the populance is largely against against opening the Olympics on July 23. Japan is still largely unvaccinated, with just an estimated 2% undergoing the treatment.
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