The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Tokyo 2020 have agreed to delay the Olympic Games until no later than the summer of 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a conference call between IOC President Thomas Bach, Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo and a number of other officials from the IOC and Tokyo 2020, it was agreed that the Games should be delayed until beyond 2020 to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community. .
The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present.
It was also agreed that the Olympic flame will stay in Japan and that the Games will keep the name Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.
President Bach said: “Yes, there will be an Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. So the athletes will have the chance and the opportunity of their life, to make their Olympic dream come true even in these uncertain times, and their preparations will need the cooperation of everybody. And also the understanding in particular of the athletes. They have to come together and address this unprecedented situation together.
“If we do so, if we are all standing together and everybody makes his or her contribution, then I am really confident that in the end these Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 can be the light at the end of this dark tunnel we are all going through together now, and we all want to see the Olympic Flame at the end of this dark tunnel.”