Japan has just returned partially to a state of emergency due to a new outbreak of Covid-19. A resurgence of the coronavirus in the country, to which is added the discovery of a new variant, which again raises the question of whether or not the Olympic Games will be maintained from July 23 to August 8, 2021 when they have already been postponed d ‘a year.
A prominent Canadian member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Dick Pound, told the British channel BBC that “nothing was guaranteed”. It was already he who last year, at the end of February, had expressed the first doubts. Then Tuesday January 12 on Twitter, it is the British rower and quadruple Olympic champion Matthew Pinset who wanted a new postponement to 2024, also shifting in the wake of Paris to 2028 and Los Angeles to 2032.
For now, the Olympic atmosphere in the capital of Japan is not present at all. When we ask passers-by the question of holding the Olympic Games this summer, the answer is hardly cheerful: “It’s a huge event so everyone would be very excited if it took place, estimates a Tokyoite. But given the current situation, there is cause for concern. Right now, everyone is thinking more about their own health. “ Meven a young 30-year-old employee fears the worst: “Personally, I think it is better to give it up. Otherwise we will only amplify the pandemic. We must decide quickly.”
Organizers insist on health protocols and suggest that they could drastically limit places for foreign spectators, but the vaccination campaign in Japan will not start until the end of February at best. As 60-year-old Taro points out, the voice of the population counts for little: “It is a difficult decision which does not belong to us, it is for the Olympic Committee to decide, but I think it should be canceled. I work in the medical sector, and we do not know at all when we will come to bout this virus. “
In Japan, according to the most recent polls, 80% of citizens are now resistant to holding the Olympic Games this summer. The Prime Minister insists that preparations are continuing as planned.