TOKYO (AFP) – Olympics organisers are “unwavering” on the prospect of holding the coronavirus-delayed Games this year but cannot rule out staging the quadrennial event without spectators, Tokyo 2020 chief executive officer Toshiro Muto has told AFP. In an interview ahead of the Games’ six-month countdown, he conceded people are “anxious” as virus cases soar worldwide, including in Japan where Tokyo is under a state of emergency. But he insisted the Olympics were still possible, even without requiring athletes and fans to be vaccinated, and that public opinion will swing behind the Games once the virus situation improves. “We are not discussing cancellation,” he said on Tuesday (Jan 20). “Holding the Games is our unwavering policy, and at this point in time we’re not discussing anything other than that.” The spectre of cancellation has returned to haunt the Games 10 months after the pandemic forced the first peacetime postponement in Olympic history. Polling in Japan this month showed around 80 per cent of respondents oppose holding the Games this year, even after organisers unveiled a raft of anti-virus measures. Much remains uncertain, including whether foreign fans will be able to attend, or if spectators will be allowed at all. Japan’s… Read full this story
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