07/14/2021, 10.02
JAPAN
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Japanese still opposed to the Olympics

Only 22% of the population is in favour of the sporting event going ahead as planned. Yesterday, more than 2,000 new infections were recorded in the capital. IOC president: "The cancellation of the Games is not an option".

Tokyo (AsiaNews/Agencies) - With less than ten days to go before the start of the Games, Japanese interest in the Olympics is at an all-time low due to concerns over the increase in Covid-19 infections and the withdrawal of some prominent international athletes, according to an Ipsos poll.

The survey released yesterday showed that only 22% of Japanese are in favour of the Games going ahead as planned, despite the strict anti-Covid-19 procedures put in place by local authorities. Globally, interest in the Olympics is 46%.

At the beginning of the week, a state of emergency came into force again in Tokyo prefecture, where most cases have been recorded in the last month. Yesterday, 2,396 infections were added, bringing the total toll to 825,000 across the country. The restrictions will last until 22 August, one day before the start of the Paralympics. 

Spectators are not allowed to attend Olympic events in the capital and surrounding prefectures, while Japanese officials are asking residents to watch the games on TV to avoid as much travel as possible.

According to Tokyo's governor, Yuriko Koike, the city will be able to hold a "safe and secure" event thanks to the acceleration of the vaccination campaign among the elderly and the presence of more hospitals in the capital. 

Thomas Bach, president of the International Olympic Committee, who will meet Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga today, yesterday praised the organisers of the sporting event and reiterated that cancellation of the Games was not an option.

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