Though the COVID-19 pandemic is still raging worldwide, and there are plenty of rumors to the contrary, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga again insisted that his country is committed to hosting the Olympics this summer in Tokyo.
Suga, while speaking remotely at the World Economic Forum on Friday, said that the Games will move forward in July.
“We are holding the Olympics and Paralympics this summer,” Suga said, via The Associated Press. “I am determined to achieve the games as a proof of human victory against the pandemic, a symbol of global solidarity and to give hope and courage around the world.”
Suga: ‘We must learn lessons from this pandemic’
The Olympics were already postponed from last summer due to the coronavirus pandemic, and are set to kick off in July.
Those games have seemingly been in constant doubt, and it’s still unclear how they will specifically move forward. The games could end up being held without fans completely, held in an NBA-like bubble, and more.
Reports earlier this month suggested that the games could be canceled completely, both due to a recent spike in cases in Japan and an overwhelming majority of Japanese citizens who don’t think the Olympics should be held there this summer.
Though the International Olympic Committee strongly denied these reports, a Florida lawmaker even lobbied the IOC into moving the games to his state — something that’s not feasible for a number of reasons.
While a lot still needs to be figured out before July, Suga’s goal is to host a “safe and secure” Olympics — and knows that getting the coronavirus under control in Japan is the first step. He’s also pledged to expand on their $130 million contribution to help developing countries get vaccines, and called for a widespread investigation from the World Health Organization.
“We must learn lessons from this pandemic and be prepared for future crises,” Suga said, via The Associated Press. “[To do so], a scientific investigation by WHO must be firmly carried out in a transparent way.”
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