TOKYO, August 16. /TASS/. The Local Organizing Committee (LOC) of the 2020 Summer Paralympic Games in Tokyo decided to hold the upcoming global tournament without spectators in attendance, Japan’s Kyodo news agency reported on Monday.
An official announcement on this decision was voiced at the joint session of representatives of the Japanese government, Tokyo administration, the LOC-2020 and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), according to the news agency.
According to Kyodo, "The International Paralympic Committee and three other bodies decided on the policy to stage all competitions behind closed doors in Tokyo and the prefectures of Chiba, Saitama and Shizuoka during a meeting."
The meeting was attended by IPC President Andrew Parsons, who arrived in Tokyo earlier in the day, LOC 2020 chief Seiko Hashimoto, Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike and Tamayo Marukawa, the sports minister of Japan.
Commenting on the decision, Kyodo news agency quoted Hashimoto as saying: "By taking further thorough measures gained from the experience of hosting the Olympics, I am convinced that we can realize a safe, secure and smooth games."
IPC President Parsons stated that: "In light of the current case numbers in Tokyo and wider Japan, everyone attending these games must be vigilant and follow the principles of the playbooks at all time. Only by doing so, we'll be able to deliver a safe and spectacular Paralympic Games."
The IPC chief participated in today’s meeting virtually, speaking from a room in his hotel, where he must undergo COVID-19 quarantine stipulated by the rules of the local organizers of the 2020 Summer Paralympics.
"After five years of training, the athletes are extremely excited. They are primed and ready to take center stage. I can't wait to see them compete," Parsons added.
Summer Paralympic Games
The 2020 Summer Paralympic Games in Japan’s Tokyo will be held between August 24 and September 5. In March 2020, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) announced their decision to postpone the 2020 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games in Japan for one year due to the continuous COVID-19 spread.
The 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Japan’s capital of Tokyo were held this year between July 23 and August 8. On July 12, a state of emergency over the deteriorating coronavirus situation was declared in Tokyo, which has manifested as a ban on alcohol at eating facilities and limits on the number of spectators at mass events. This is why the Olympic Games were held without fans.
As of today, Japan is ranked 29th globally in terms of reported COVID-19 cases, which currently stand at over 1,144,540. A total of over 15,400 people have died of the novel coronavirus infection there, while more than 968,380 have recovered from the illness.