Tokyo 2020 Olympics POSTPONED: Games delayed until next summer, organisers confirm

The Tokyo Olympics has been postponed until next summer due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Organisers confirmed on Tuesday that the 2020 Games will not go ahead this year after talks between Japan’s Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, and the International Olympic Committee’s president Thomas Bach.

The Olympics will not take place in Tokyo this summer as scheduled

The Olympics will not take place in Tokyo this summer as scheduled
Jose Mourinho delivers essential goods to vulnerable people in Enfield struggling due to coronavirus

In a joint statement from the IOC and Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee, they underlined their reasons for the postponement.

“In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO today, the IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community,” read the statement.

“The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present.

“Therefore, it was agreed that the Olympic flame will stay in Japan. It was also agreed that the Games will keep the name Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.”

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe confirmed on Tuesday the Olympics will be delayed by a year

GETTY

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe confirmed on Tuesday the Olympics will be delayed by a year

The decision to postpone the Games was made following a conference call on Tuesday between Bach, Abe, Tokyo 2020 organising committee president Yoshiro Mori, Olympics minister Seiko Hashimoto, the governor of Tokyo Yuriko Koike, the chair of the IOC’s co-ordination commission John Coates, IOC director general Christophe De Kepper and IOC Olympic Games executive director Christophe Dubi.

The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic committees had already announced they would not compete in Tokyo this summer, while the Australians had told their athletes to prepare for a postponement to the summer of 2021 and Great Britain warned it was unlikely to send any of their athletes.

Team USA said it had surveyed its athletes with nearly 93 per cent of the 1,780 respondents preferring to see the Games postponed rather than outright cancelled, while 68 per cent said the event could not be fairly competed if continued as scheduled.

FULL STATEMENT FROM THE INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE AND THE TOKYO 2020 ORGANISING COMMITTEE

“The unprecedented and unpredictable spread of the outbreak has seen the situation in the rest of the world deteriorating.

“President Bach and Prime Minister Abe expressed their shared concern about the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, and what it is doing to people’s lives and the significant impact it is having on global athletes’ preparations for the Games.

“In a very friendly and constructive meeting, the two leaders praised the work of the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and noted the great progress being made in Japan to fight against COVID-19.

“The unprecedented and unpredictable spread of the outbreak has seen the situation in the rest of the world deteriorating. Yesterday, the Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that the COVID-19 pandemic is “accelerating”. There are more than 375,000 cases now recorded worldwide and in nearly every country, and their number is growing by the hour.

“In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO today, the IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community.

“The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present. Therefore, it was agreed that the Olympic flame will stay in Japan. It was also agreed that the Games will keep the name Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.”


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