Chairman of the Olympics Organising Committee – Yoshiro Mori has admitted that the rescheduled Tokyo Games cannot go ahead if the present global health situation persists.
Friday was supposed to be the opening ceremony for the Tokyo Olympics, but the coronavirus pandemic saw the Games postponed until 2021.
Organising chief Yoshiro Mori was asked by national broadcaster NHK if the Olympics would be able to go ahead if things were unchanged.
“If the current situation continues, we couldn’t,” he said, before adding that he believes such a scenario is hypothetical and the outlook will improve.
“I can’t imagine a situation like this will continue for another year.”
Mori stated that finding a vaccine is likely to be crucial for the Olympics to take place in 2021.
“Whether the Olympics can be done or not is about whether humanity can beat the coronavirus. Specifically, the first point will be that a vaccine or drug has been developed,” Mori added.
International Olympics Committee chief Thomas Bach recently suggested the Olympics may go ahead with reduced spectator numbers.
Mori suggested Bach was referring to a worst-case scenario and, while acknowledging different scenarios may have to be looked at if the pandemic continues as it is now, he is against a behind-closed-doors Olympics.
“We shouldn’t make spectators go through hard times. Sporting events are all about the whole country empathising,” Mori told Kyodo News.