By STEPHEN WADE and HARUKA NUGA, Related Press
TOKYO (AP) — The delayed Tokyo Olympics couldn’t be held subsequent yr if circumstances surrounding the coronavirus pandemic proceed as they’re, the president of the organizing committee stated Wednesday.
In an interview with Japanese broadcaster NHK, Yoshiro Mori stated he was hopeful the scenario would enhance and advised a vaccine was the important thing.
“If this type of scenario (with COVID-19) continues, is it potential to carry the video games?” Mori was requested by NHK.
“If present scenario continues, we couldn’t,” Mori replied, talking in Japanese.
The Tokyo Olympics are scheduled to open on July 23, 2021 — a yr from Thursday. A small, 15-minute ceremony with out followers is scheduled for Thursday on the new nationwide stadium to mark the date.
The Worldwide Olympic Committee and Japanese organizers have repeatedly expressed confidence the video games will happen, although they’ve supplied few particulars on how they’ll occur in the course of a pandemic.
The IOC and organizers have additionally stated the Olympics is not going to be postponed once more and could be canceled.
“It will be an excessive amount of for us to reply every of those hypothetical questions,” Mori stated. “I don’t suppose this case will final for an additional yr.”
Researchers have stated a vaccine may very well be six-to-nine months away, which Mori stated was the important thing. Some, nonetheless, query if younger athletes ought to be a precedence, and if all would conform to be vaccinated.
“Whether or not the Olympics might be carried out or not is about whether or not humanity can beat the coronavirus,” Mori stated. “Particularly, to develop a vaccine or drug is the primary level.”
Organizers and the IOC say they need to simplify the video games to assist cut back the hovering prices. However officers can not say now if followers can be permitted subsequent yr, or if athletes will face quarantines. They are saying few particulars can be obtainable till the autumn.
Plans name for the total contingent of 11,000 Olympic athletes and 4,400 Paralympic athletes to be competing at 42 venues.
About 1,000 deaths in Japan have been attributed to the coronavirus. Tokyo has seen a rising variety of every day instances in the previous few weeks, which reached a excessive of just about 300 final week.
However the numbers are comparatively modest for a metropolitan space of 14 million.
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