The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee released an official joint statement this morning. "The games must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community," the release states.
Covid-19 has shaken up the entire world, forcing businesses to close, sports to prematurely end their seasons and everything to be cancelled – except for the Olympics, which could have won a gold medal in deflection.
This past Sunday, Canada was the first major country to withdraw its athletes from this summer's Olympic and Paralympic games unless the IOC postponed the games for one year.
Canada's decision prompted other countries to follow suit and the IOC to step up their talks with health officials and the Japanese government. Thomas Bach, President of the IOC, also released a statement on Sunday saying that the committee would make a decision within four weeks, but "cancelling was off the table."
Other members of the IOC came to a different conclusion. Veteran IOC member Dick Pound issued multiple statements saying that the games had already been postponed and that those four weeks will be spent trying to figure out exactly how that would work. Pound's comments were not confirmed by IOC spokespeople.
As of this morning, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan asked Mr. Bach for the postponement of the games and he agreed “100 percent,” Mr. Abe told reporters.
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