Tokyo Olympics to be postponed to summer 2021 at the latest

It’s official: the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic

written by: Erika | Source: The Japan Times

March 24, 2020, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has announced that he has reached an agreement with the International Olympic Committee to postpone the Tokyo Olympics to next summer at the latest.

olimpiadi di Tokyo olimpiadi di Tokyo

Abe “reconfirmed” with the president of the International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach that the Olympic Games will not be canceled but that the two have reached a common agreement to hold the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics “at the latest by summer 2021”.

The announcement, which came following Abe’s call with Bach, Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike, Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee chairman Yoshiro Mori and Olympics minister Seiko Hashimoto, indicates that the games will be postponed for the first time during a peace period.

The Japanese Prime Minister said that the health of athletes and visitors played an important role in the decision to postpone the games and that it would be difficult to hold them later this year.

“Given the current circumstances, I asked him to consider that the Tokyo Olympics be postponed for about a year to make sure athletes from around the world are able to perform in the best condition possible and to ensure spectators’ safety and security as a host country , ”Abe told reporters.

The prime minister has promised to ensure that the Olympics and Paralympics will be held in “complete form” also to prove that humanity has conquered the new coronavirus.

“Japan will fulfill its responsibilities as a host nation,” Abe said. “Given that goal, we’ll be making adjustments about venues, and we understand that an IOC meeting will be held soon,” 

Tokyo 2020

As announced during the press message, the Olympics will be held at the latest in the summer of 2021. However, the possibility of holding them during the next spring cannot be excluded as long as the pandemic linked to COVID-19 is under control.

According to official sources, given the unprecedented situation and the deterioration worldwide, the organizers have decided that the Olympic torch will remain in Japan until the start of the Olympics. This will be for all a “beacon of hope” for the whole world during this difficult period. It is hoped that the Olympic flame will become the light that guides us towards the end of this tunnel in which we find ourselves.

Although they will be held in 2021, these Olympics will continue to be called the Tokyo 2020 Games but more details will emerge from the next meetings of the International Olympic Committee.

In addition, Koike specified that canceling these Olympics would have devastating results for the Japanese people. Although postponing these games constitutes a major financial loss for Japan, the IOC and the shareholders hope that this decision can stem the damage to a minimum in the hope that the pandemic is under control by then.