Japan Paralympics chief says calls to cancel Games are 'very unfortunate'

Reuters
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: May 16, 2021, 05:41 PM(IST)

Paralympics Photograph:( AFP )

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The head of Japan's Paralympic Committee said on Sunday (May 16) that calls to cancel the Summer Games were "very unfortunate", as Tokyo organizers held a ceremony to mark 100-days-to-go before the opening of the Paralympic Games.

The head of Japan's Paralympic Committee said on Sunday (May 16) that calls to cancel the Summer Games were "very unfortunate", as Tokyo organizers held a ceremony to mark 100-days-to-go before the opening of the Paralympic Games.

As part of the ceremony, Tokyo Paralympic mascot Someity helped unveil the Paralympic symbol at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government complex.

Japan Paralympic Committee Chairman Mitsunori Torihara and others including Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike made speeches, followed by a performance by kabuki actor Ebizo Ichikawa.

Japan is wrestling with a surge in coronavirus infections and opinion polls show the majority of Japanese are against the Games being held this summer.

"Not only are we not hearing citizens say they are excited about the Olympics and Paralympics, but it's also becoming news that people are saying the Games should be canceled. This is very unfortunate," Torihara said.

"What is important now, as you have just heard, is that the government, Tokyo, the organizing committee and relevant groups join together and keep conveying in an easy-to-understand way in and outside Japan that we are doing our utmost to prepare for a safe and secure Games with thorough COVID-19 countermeasures," he said.

The Tokyo Olympics, postponed by a year due to the pandemic, are scheduled for July 23 to Aug. 8, followed by the Paralympics from Aug. 24 to Sept. 5.

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