On Wednesday, it was reported that the Prime Minister of Japan was deciding on whether to declare a state of emergency due to the increase of coronavirus cases as the Olympics quickly approaches. On Thursday, it was announced that fans will be banned from the venues at the Olympics after the state of emergency was declared.
According to CNN, the announcement about not allowing fans to be present during the games came after a meeting that was held by five Olympic and Japanese government groups that are responsible for the games. Seiko Hashimoto from the Japanese Olympic Committee said, “A very heavy judgment was made.” He continued to state that due to the rising numbers of cases, there was “no choice but to hold the Games in a limited way.”
According to CNN’s global vaccine tracker, only 15% of Japan’s population has been vaccinated. While 47% of the U.S. population has been vaccinated, and nearly 50% of the population in the U.K. has been vaccinated.
Officials did announce that if there is a change in the number of cases, they will gather to discuss the spectator capacity for the Paralympic Games, which takes place from August 24th through September 5th.
On Thursday, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said, “The President supports the Tokyo Olympic Games and the public health measures necessary to protect athletes, staff, and spectators. He has pride in the US athletes who have trained for Tokyo Games and will be competing in the best traditions of the Olympic spirit.”
She continued, “We’re well aware of the careful preparations, including the public health measures necessary to protect athletes, staff, and spectators, that the government and international committee has undertaken, which is why, as we said, we support the games moving forward.”
As the Olympics approach, there has been a lot of talk about the athletes that will, and will not be able to compete. Earlier this week it was determined Sha’Carri Richardson would not be able to run at all after being suspended for failing a drug test and testing positive for marijuana. Last week, Serena Williams also announced that she would not be competing this year as well.
The 2021 Tokyo Olympics begin on July 23rd.
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TSR STAFF: Jade Ashley @Jade_Ashley94