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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

IOC Denies Canceling 2021 Tokyo Olympics

On Friday, the International Olympics Committee firmly denied the news making rounds that the IOC, in collaboration with the Japanese Government, has canceled the 2021 Olympics billed to start in Tokyo on July 23, 2021, as a result of the fears of the coronavirus pandemic ravaging the world currently.

Tokyo Olympic organizers have resolved to go ahead with the Games despite a third wave of coronavirus infections in Japan that has placed the country under a state of emergency.

Earlier in the week, a British Times newspaper report says that the IOC and the Japanese government are privately discussing the possibility of canceling the Olympics Games as a result of Covid-19. A Japan Government official has said that the report is false.

Recalled that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was to hold in 2020 but was put off due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It was moved to 2021, and there are fears that it might be canceled altogether. However, condemnations and denials have followed the Times’ report with the head of Japan Olympics Committee, Yasuhiro Yamashita, calling it “a fabrication”. 

IOC President - Thomas Bach
IOC President – Thomas Bach

The IOC has issued a statement promising to implement all possible counter-measures against COVID-19 during the Games and that it is fully committed to “holding a safe and secure Games this summer.”

A recent surge in the number of coronavirus infections in Japan has heightened fears about foreign athletes and sports enthusiasts entering Japan for the Olympics in the summer. 

Japan is currently on its third wave of Covid-19 even though it has been less hit than it neighbors, with about 4,700 deaths recorded since the pandemic began. Organizers are optimistic that with advanced production and availability of vaccines, the Tokyo Olympics will be staged successfully and that, hopefully, the Olympics torch will be lit come July 23, 2021.

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