Reports from Japan’s top medical advisers seem to confront him with the organizers of Tokyo and the National Olympic Committee.
Tokyo, Japan — The safest way to host the Tokyo Olympics is to have no fans, the Japanese government’s best medical adviser said in a report on Friday.
Dr. Shigeru Omi’s recommendation seems to be in conflict with the organizers and the International Olympic Committee, which will host the Olympics in just five weeks on July 23.
Foreign fans were banned a few months ago and the organizers will announce early next week whether local fans should be allowed.
“We believe that holding an event without fans has the lowest risk of infection in the venue,” said a group of 26 experts led by Omi, a former World Health Organization employee. The report states.It was submitted to government and Olympic officials
According to widely distributed reports, the government wants to allow up to 10,000 people at some sporting and cultural events. This policy is expected to apply to the Olympics, where smaller venues have smaller ceilings and there are differences between indoor and outdoor venues.
“I think it’s most desirable to have no fans in the venue,” Omi said at a press conference on Friday after submitting the report. “Japan continues to be at risk of recurrence of infectious diseases that put pressure on the healthcare system, with or without the Olympics.”
Omi said having fans at the venue would increase the risk. He said the Olympics are more likely to attract the attention of the general public than other sporting events and cause more exercise and more parties.
Seiko Hashimoto, chairman of the Local Organizing Committee, said the final decision of the fans is likely to be made on Monday at a meeting with the organizers, the IOC, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, the Government of Japan and the International Paralympic Committee.
Hashimoto said that if Tokyo decides to allow fans, it will need far stricter rules than Japan’s half-filled stadium for baseball and soccer. She also said that if the situation changed, the organizers would have to be ready to suddenly ban local fans.
“Dr. Omi pointed out that ideally the best way to hold a match without an spectator was his recommendation,” Hashimoto said. “But if you want to play with the spectators, Professor Omi also gave you some advice.”
Mr. Hashimoto said he consulted with Japanese baseball and soccer officials who had few problems in the match with the fans.
“But Dr. Omi also said that the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics are very special. Therefore, Dr. Omi said that he needed to be even stricter than other sporting events. Therefore, consider stricter rules. People who come to the game are at risk of this and stop by bars and restaurants after watching it before going home, so it’s a good idea to go straight home after watching the game. “
Ticket sales now account for $ 800 million in Organizing Committee revenue. Many are lost and government agencies need to make up for the shortfall.
According to the organizers, about 3.6-3.7 million tickets are still held by Japanese residents. About 800,000 tickets have been returned locally.
The total number of tickets first announced at the Olympics was about 7.8 million.
The official cost of the Tokyo Olympics is $ 15.4 billion, which is much higher, according to a government audit. All but $ 6.7 billion are publicly funded.
The IOC is promoting Tokyo, as it relies on the sale of broadcast rights for nearly 75% of its revenue. Sponsors supply about 18%,
Emergency measures in Tokyo and other prefectures will be lifted on Sunday, but “quasi-emergency” restrictions that may limit the opening hours of bars and restaurants will continue to apply.
Japan has caused more than 14,000 deaths due to COVID-19 and has better controlled the virus than many countries, but not as many as in Asia. Only 15% of the Japanese have been vaccinated with COVID-19 at least once, and many oppose hosting the Olympics.
Opinion poll answers vary depending on the wording of the question, and the Asahi Shimbun, the second most widely published newspaper in Japan, states that the game should be discontinued.
Do you have fans at the Tokyo Olympics?
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