Tokyo Olympic Games: State of Emergency Declared


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Tokyo, Japan’s capital will be hosting the Olympic Games without spectators due to increasing cases of coronavirus.

Olympics Minister Tamayo Marukawa declared the news, following various debates with officials and organisers on Thursday evening.

A state of emergency in Tokyo will run during the Games, to combat coronavirus.

Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga told reporters that the games will be held from 12 July and remain in place until 22 August.

As per this plan, the bars and restaurants will not be allowed to serve alcohol and must close by 20:00 (11:00 GMT).

As the date for the opening ceremony that is 23 July, edges closer, the coronavirus cases seem to be at a constant rise.

There has been extensive disapproval regarding the Games in Japan. The citizens want the games to either be postponed or cancelled.

After meeting government officials, Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto said:

“It is regrettable that we are delivering the Games in a very limited format, facing the spread of coronavirus infections.

“I am sorry to those who purchased tickets and everyone in local areas.”

Mr Suga announced the state of emergency in Tokyo earlier in the day.

“Taking into consideration the effect of coronavirus variants and not to let the infections spread again to the rest of the nation, we need to strengthen our countermeasures,” the prime minister said.

This decision was made after a meeting between the organising committee, the government and the International Olympic Committee president, Thomas Bach.

And now, the games have been scheduled in Tokyo between 23 July and 8 August. The Paralympic Games are between 24 August and 5 September.

Covid in Japan

Although Japan faced a new wave of infections in April, but overall, the country had a low death toll of around 14,900.

Moreover, on Wednesday new 2,180 cases were reported in the country. About 920 were in Tokyo, the number increased from 720 last week. And it’s even higher since 1,010 on May 13.

The country’s vaccination process has been slow. Just over 15% of the people are fully vaccinated.


Do people want the Olympics to be held?

There is a lot of antagonism regarding the Games, which have already been postponed by a year because of Covid-19.

Furthermore, the games have experienced hindrances, including enormous budget overruns.

According to a June poll led by Asahi Shimbun newspaper, more than 80% of the population wanted the games to be cancelled or postponed.

Public spectator sites have tussled and firms have been diffident about advertising related to the Olympics because of the widespread disapproval towards them.


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