Tokyo Olympics postponed until next year

Published March 25, 2020
Speculations finally end; decision made in consultation with Japanese PM. — AFP/File
Speculations finally end; decision made in consultation with Japanese PM. — AFP/File

TOKYO: The 2020 Tokyo Oly­mpics were postponed until 2021 on Tuesday, ending weeks of speculation the games could not go ahead as scheduled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The International Olym­pic Committee (IOC) made the decision after speaking to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and local organisers.

The IOC said the games would be held not later than summer of 2021 but they would still be called the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO, IOC president Thomas Bach 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 IOC said in a statement.

Before the official annou­ncement, Abe said Bach had agreed with his proposal for a one-year postponement.

The decision came only a few hours after local organisers said the torch relay would start as planned on Thursday. Those plans also would be changed now.

For the time being, the flame will be stored and displayed in Fukushima, organising committee president Yoshiro Mori said.

The Olympics have never before been postponed, and have only ever previously been cancelled in wartime.

The IOC and Tokyo organisers said they hope the decision to postpone will help the world heal from the pandemic.

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, the IOC statement said.

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

Published in Dawn, March 25th, 2020

Opinion

Editorial

Avenfield relief
Updated 30 Sep, 2022

Avenfield relief

Accountability cannot continue to be treated like a revolving door in which politicians can be shoved in or pulled out on a whim.
Dar’s plans
Updated 30 Sep, 2022

Dar’s plans

For starters, the country doesn’t have spare dollars to burn.
Another targeted attack
30 Sep, 2022

Another targeted attack

WEDNESDAY’S deadly attack on three Chinese-origin individuals in Karachi’s Saddar area demonstrates the threat...
More leaks
Updated 29 Sep, 2022

More leaks

Recent leaks look more like an inside job than the work of a foreign power.
A depressing winter
29 Sep, 2022

A depressing winter

WINTER is on its way, with a massive gas crunch looming as elevated global LNG prices have eroded the cash-strapped...
Great expectations
29 Sep, 2022

Great expectations

CONSIDERING that the Afghan Taliban have been in the saddle for over a year now, the UN has expressed frustration...