IOC President Bach's visit to Japan to be cancelled due to state of emergency: Reports

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: May 07, 2021, 07:32 PM(IST)

Seiko Hashimoto named Tokyo 2020 chief after sexism row Photograph:( AFP )

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"I suspect that coming to Japan in the midst of this very severe situation would also be an emotional burden for President Bach," she said at a news conference held on Friday.

International Olympic Committee head Thomas Bach's planned visit to Japan has been cancelled as the Asian country extended its state of emergency in Tokyo, broadcaster NHK said on Friday citing unnamed sources.

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Seiko Hashimoto, Tokyo 2020 chief, on Friday said that Bach's visit to the country was "difficult" amidst a "severe" situation with coronavirus cases showing no signs of abating and the government keeping infection countermeasures in place to slow the spread of the virus.

"I suspect that coming to Japan in the midst of this very severe situation would also be an emotional burden for President Bach," she said at a news conference held on Friday.

According to Japanese media reports, Bach would attend a torch relay ceremony in the western city of Hiroshima on May 17. However, Hashimoto is yet to confirm this visit. 

Tokyo 2020 organisers will keep a close eye on the coronavirus situation and make a decision on Olympic spectators in June based on that, Hashimoto also said.

On Friday, Japan extended a state of emergency in Tokyo and four other areas until the end of May, meaning the measures would end less than two months before the Olympics start on July 23 after being postponed for a year due to the pandemic.

(Inputs from Reuters)

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