Tokyo expects to secure all venues for Olympics

Published July 10, 2020
Tokyo 2020 spokesman Masa Takaya (not pictured) terms reports as 'optimistic'. — Reuters/File
Tokyo 2020 spokesman Masa Takaya (not pictured) terms reports as 'optimistic'. — Reuters/File

TOKYO: Tokyo Olympics organisers expect to be able to use all the venues as originally planned at next year’s rearranged Games, several Japanese media outlets reported on Thursday.

Securing venues was a top priority for organisers after the Games were pushed back to 2021 due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, and Kyodo and NHK, citing unnamed sources, said they were now confident they would be tied down for Olympics use again.

However, at his regular weekly news conference, Tokyo 2020 spokesman Masa Takaya said the reports were ‘optimistic’ and that nothing had been announced.

“We have seen a series of media reports concerning the status of securing venues for the Games in 2021,” said Takaya. “Tokyo 2020 is aware of these reports but I need to be very clear ... this is not something on which Tokyo Metropolitan Government or the Tokyo organising committee has made a formal announcement.

“The organising committee has not made such an announcement at this stage and during this process, it is very unfortunate to see such reports based on this optimistic view.”

Tokyo’s city government reported a single-day record of 224 new Covid-19 infections on Thursday, surpassing a high of 204 in April. Though low by many standards, it marks a steady increase over the last week in the Japanese capital.

Published in Dawn, July 10th, 2020

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