In the latest blow to the Tokyo Olympics, around 40 Japanese cities have abandoned plans to host visiting athletes amid concerns over insufficient resources as Japan deals with its latest wave of Covid infections -19, while calls multiply for the event to be postponed or canceled.
2.9%. That’s the percentage of Japan’s population of 126 million who have received at least one dose of the vaccine, according to Bloomberg’s Global Immunization Tracker. Reuters notes that this makes it the slowest rollout among rich countries.
“I don’t think we can gain the understanding of the international community, let alone Japan, if we were to host the Olympics in the midst of a medical collapse,” Oigawa told reporters earlier this week. Governor Ibaraki last week joined with eight others in the country to call for the Olympics to be postponed or canceled.
Last week, the Japanese government announced it would extend its state of emergency in Tokyo, Osaka and two other regions until May 31, as it faces a worrying rise in Covid-19 cases. The steady increase in cases as well as a slow rollout of vaccines have called into question the feasibility of the Olympics due to take place in July. The increasingly unpopular move has now started to face rejection from Japanese citizens online and a petition to cancel the games has now reached 345,000 signatures. The petition, which was launched last week, argues that it is “highly possible” for the Olympics to become a “mass market” event that “will cause danger and fear to healthcare workers, citizens and participants” .
Latest coronavirus: 40 Japanese cities give up hosting Olympic athletes (Nikkei Asia)
Japanese cities drop plans to host Olympians amid coronavirus outbreak (Reuters)
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