Here’s another dramatic effect the coronavirus might have on the sports world.
Japan Olympic minister Seiko Hashimoto told the country’s parliament on Tuesday that Tokyo and other cities in the country have the right to stage the 2020 Summer Olympic games at any time during this calendar year. A coronavirus outbreak in Japan has prompted the government to close schools and curtail sporting events. Many openly speculate what impact the fast-spreading virus will have on the Tokyo Olympics, and Hashimoto’s comments undoubtedly will prompt more questions than answers.
“The IOC has the right to cancel the games only if they are not held during 2020,” Hashimoto said, per The Associated Press. “This can be interpreted to mean the games can be postponed as long as they are held during the calendar year.”
The International Olympic Committee issued a statement Tuesday, in which it expressed its “full commitment to the success of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, taking place from July 24 to Aug. 9, 2020.”
Japanese officials have blamed coronavirus for the deaths of 12 people in the country. Coronavirus has killed at least 3,100 and sickened at least 90,000 worldwide.