The Tokyo Olympics are to be postponed until 2021 after talks among Japan’s prime minister, Shinzo Abe, and the International Olympic Committee president, Thomas Bach.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Tuesday he and the head of the International Olympic Committee agreed on the idea of delaying the Tokyo Olympics by about one year. Abe was addressing the reporters after a telephonic with IOC President Thomas Bach on postponing the Games amid growing concerns over the corona virus pandemic. “We asked President Bach to consider postponement of about one year to make it possible for athletes to play in the best condition, and to make the event a safe and secure one for spectators,” Abe said. President Bach said he is in agreement 100 percent.
The Games “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 and the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee said later in a joint statement.
The Olympic Games and Paralympic Games will continue to be called the “Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020” even if they are held next year, and the Olympic flame will stay in Japan “as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times”.