Tokyo Olympics 2020: No torch relay on Osaka’s public roads, says prefecture governor

Tokyo Olympics 2020: No torch relay on Osaka’s public roads, says prefecture governor

Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura’s feedback got here a day after he and town’s mayor referred to as for the torch relay leg to be cancelled given a latest spike in Covid-19 infections within the area.

Tokyo Olympics 2020: No torch relay on Osaka’s public roads, says prefecture governor

File picture of Osaka governor Hirofumi Yoshimura. AP

Tokyo: The Olympic torch relay is not going to be run on public roads in Osaka metropolis given rising virus circumstances, the Japanese area’s governor stated Friday, however a cancellation has not but been determined.

“We’re sorry for torch relay runners… however we can’t do the torch relay on public roads in Osaka metropolis,” Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura informed reporters.

“We’ll talk about with the Tokyo 2020 organising committee if there are any options,” he added.

His feedback got here a day after he and town’s mayor referred to as for the torch relay leg to be cancelled given a latest spike in COVID-19 infections within the area.

Japan’s Olympic Minister Tamayo Marukawa expressed help within the morning, saying it was “affordable” that the Osaka authorities has proposed cancellation as they should include the unfold of infections.

Tokyo 2020 president Seiko Hashimoto informed reporters Friday that the destiny of the Osaka metropolis relay leg was nonetheless being mentioned.

We would like “to return to a conclusion at our earliest comfort, however the discussions are nonetheless happening,” she stated.

“Though we want to make conclusions as quickly as potential, we additionally must be versatile in order that we will accommodate altering occasions that will come up.”

The relay started on 25 March from Fukushima, with organisers hoping it’s going to assist construct enthusiasm throughout Japan for the Video games after a year-long delay attributable to the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s scheduled to journey by way of Osaka prefecture on 13 and 14 April, beginning in Sakai metropolis and ending in Osaka metropolis.

Guidelines already require spectators lining the relay path to put on masks and keep away from cheering, and the organisers have stated legs of the route could possibly be cancelled if overcrowding happens.

Coronavirus infections have been rising in Osaka, Hyogo and Miyagi prefectures, and the federal government introduced new restrictions for the areas on Thursday, permitting officers there to require companies to shut early or face fines.

Olympic officers have launched a sequence of rulebooks they are saying will enable the Video games to go forward this summer season regardless of the virus.

However they’ve already been pressured to postpone a number of take a look at occasions, with Kyodo Information company reporting Friday {that a} diving take a look at occasion would possibly now be cancelled.

The Diving World Cup, which can also be an Olympic qualifier, is scheduled to happen in Tokyo from 18-23 April, however Kyodo stated some groups had been reluctant to journey to Japan.

FINA, the swimming federation that oversees the competitors, didn’t reply to a request for remark, and Hashimoto stated no determination had been taken but.

“Final night time we did obtain a letter from FINA however the particulars on the conclusion of whether or not they are going to be cancelling this occasion or not shouldn’t be but stipulated,” she stated.

Kyodo reported that FINA was involved about potential an infection dangers to athletes and the equity of the competitors.

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