Coronavirus Could Cancel 2020 Olympics

The Associated Press recently ran an article that revealed a senior member of the IOC stated organizers of the Tokyo Summer Olympics are more likely to cancel the games rather than postpone or move them. At this time though, preparations for Tokyo 2020 are going ahead “as planned.”

During an interview Dick Pound, senior member of the International Olympic Committee said that a decision on the fate of the games by organizers could be put off until late May. In an exclusive interview with AP he stated, “In and around that time, I’d say folks are going to have to ask: ‘Is this under sufficient control that we can be confident about going to Tokyo or not?’”

He went on to add, “As the games draw near, a lot of things have to start happening. You’ve got to start ramping up your security, your food, the Olympic Village, the hotels. The media folks will be in there building their studios.
If the IOC decides the games cannot go forward as scheduled in Tokyo, you’re probably looking at a cancellation,”

With over 15,000 athletes headed to the Olympic and Paralympics, spectators, media, officials and more that would be involved, the logistics and cost in moving or postponing the games would be substantial.

Athletes are still being told to continue their training and Japan is still moving forward with the expectation that the games will go on as scheduled, but the reality is, athletes, organizers and the IOC itself may have no control in making the decision.

Pound said the future of the Tokyo Games is largely out of the IOC’s hands and depends on the course the virus takes.

“If it gets to be something like the Spanish flu,” Pound said, referring to the deadly pandemic early in the 20th century that killed millions, “at that level of lethality, then everybody’s got to take their medicine.”

As of this article, there have been over 81,000 cases and nearly 2800 deaths confirmed.

More information on the Covid-19 Coronavirus outbreak locations can be found at:

Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering Outbreak Tracking Map

View the original Associated Press article with interview of Dick Pound

View WHO Coronavirus (COVID-19) Situation Reports

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