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Los Angeles (AFP)
Canadian International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Dick Pound announced on Monday that the postponement of the Olympic Games scheduled for this summer in Tokyo is now inevitable due to the outbreak of the new Corona virus.
The International Olympic Committee, after a meeting of its executive committee, gave itself four weeks to take the final decision on the fate of the Tokyo Olympics, scheduled for July 24 to August 9, amid increasing calls for rescheduling these games.
“My interpretation of the IOC announcement is that they do not want to cancel the Olympic Games and do not think they can continue to maintain its launch on July 24,” Pound said, adding, “Consequently, the result will be a delay.”
“They will discuss options with the Japanese, of course, and then there will be all the partners – international sporting federations, national Olympic committees and athletes,” added the former head of the International Anti-Doping Agency.
“Then, within four weeks, they will try to present Plan B and make it as accurate as possible in that time period,” he said.
He noted that the “astounding” spread of the “Covid-19” epidemic around the world left the International Olympic Committee no other option, explaining “this is something that will not disappear by July 24.”
“This thing will not go away by September or October. Many countries in the world, including the major countries, are immersed in the virus, and it has just begun to go deep into Africa. It is prohibited in my view.”
He added that delaying one year until 2021 remains the most likely option, and he said, “I think that delaying for one year is the most beneficial because it gives you a lot of time to organize.”
Many National Olympic Committees and international sports federations have expressed an unwillingness to participate in the Tokyo Olympics if the Games are held in July as planned.
On Sunday, the Canadian Olympic Committee became the first national Olympic committee to announce that it will not participate in the Olympics if the Games are held in July.
In the United States, the athletics and swimming federation has called for the games to be postponed.
The Swiss Olympic Committee also called on Monday to postpone the games.
© 2020 AFP