Dick Pound, a member of the International Olympic Committee, believes the Olympics will be held this year and says the option to cancel the event is “Essentially out of the question”.
The Tokyo Olympics, which have been postponed due to the global coronavirus pandemic, are scheduled to be held from July 23 to August 8 in 2021.
Pound insisted that all indications suggest that a “bubble” around those participating in Tokyo can be maintained, but he stopped before guaranteeing that it will be completely safe in the midst of the pandemic.
“No one can guarantee anything. I mean, let’s be reasonable on this. But everything indicates that the bubble can be created and maintained and that every day, or however often the tests are carried out, will identify any indication that there may be people infected with the virus. They will be placed in isolation. right now “, did he declare.
Earlier this year, Pound – who is the longest-serving IOC member – estimated the likelihood of the Games being around 75%, but now claims the likelihood is much higher, as experts learn more about the virus every day.
“None of the people involved in the planning and execution of the Games are considering cancellation”, he added.
Although the IOC remains steadfast in its convictions, frustration is growing among the Japanese public who fear to welcome thousands of people from around the world as the country continues to grapple with the virus.
Indeed, 80% of the Japanese are opposed to the organization of the Olympic Games this year. Japan is currently grappling with a fourth wave of infections, and health experts and business leaders are increasingly pushing to cancel the Games.
Earlier this month, the Tokyo Medical Practitioners Association, an organization of about 6,000 physicians in Tokyo, wrote a letter calling for an annulment, while a petition that garnered 350,000 signatures in nine days in support of ‘a cancellation has been submitted to the organizers.
But Pound said staging the Games in just under two months would be a symbol of hope for the world after such a difficult year.
“The hope is that despite all of these challenges – and they are many and sure enough – we can pull off an event of this nature, without any significant risk, and bring everyone together in something that has always been a glimmer of hope and success in a difficult world, it will have been worth it ”, did he declare.
IOC President Thomas Bach said the main goal now is to provide the sporting spectacle as safe as possible.
“We are starting the last round before these postponed Olympic Games. Just like the athletes who are preparing for these Games with so much focus and focus, we are also preparing for this final sprint ”, he had declared.