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Tokyo Olympics 2020: Virus could force Games’ cancellation, says top Japanese politician

According to a top official from Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), cancelling the rescheduled Tokyo Olympics remains an option.

The Games, which was postponed last year amid the coronavirus pandemic, are about to take place between July 23 and August 8, with the Paralympics following from August 24 until September 5.

As the health crisis remains to cause problems for nations across the globe, the message from the International Olympics Committee (IOC) and from the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee has thus been of the view that the show will go on.

They will ban international fans from attending, and social-distancing measures, track-and-trace systems and temperature checks will be made necessary.

But the experts in Japan warns that the country has entered a fourth wave of COVID-19 infections, and the secretary-general of the LDP, Toshihiro Nikai, said cancelling the Games remains a possibility.

“If it seems impossible to go on with the games, they must be definitely cancelled,” Nikai told TBS TV.

“If there is a surge in infections because of the Olympics, there will be no meaning to having the Olympics.”

Asked if cancellation was still an option, he added: “Of course.”

A recent survey conducted by Japanese news agency Kyodo News revealed that 39.2 per cent of the people want the Games to be cancelled, with 32.8 per cent in favour of it being delayed again.

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