(CNN) – The president of the Organizing Committee of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, Seiko Hashimoto, told the Japanese newspaper Nikkan Sports that “we cannot postpone them again”, in an interview published on Thursday, after being questioned about the possibility of postponing the event, whose inauguration It is scheduled for July 23.
“The one-year postponement has required many efforts and measures. All stadiums are already reserved for other events. It has been a very hard job putting it off for a year and we can’t give you any more problems […] It’s impossible to postpone it again, ”Hashimoto said.
Hashimoto said that, according to data provided by a professor at the University of Tokyo, holding the games without spectators would not affect the rates of COVID-19 infection in Japan.
When asked if there were any cancellation options if COVID-19 infection rates’ skyrocketed ‘just before or during the Olympics, Hashimoto said:’ If everyone is in dire straits and most of the countries cannot send their athletes, the Games cannot be held. Otherwise, they will not be canceled unless such a situation occurs. ‘
Health systems increasingly under pressure
Several prefectures in Japan remain under a state of emergency until June 20. Infection rates are declining: 3,036 new cases of covid-19 were recorded on Wednesday, about half of the daily cases registered less than a month ago, during one of the worst moments of the “fourth wave” in Japan.
However, the number of serious cases remains high, putting increasing pressure on Japan’s healthcare systems.
Japan has recorded a total of 749,829 COVID-19 cases and 13,107 deaths from the disease since the start of the pandemic, according to the latest tally by Johns Hopkins University.
Fauci says the safest thing is to get vaccinated
The safest thing Olympians can do is go to games vaccinated, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said Thursday on CNN’s “New Day.”
What happens to the Olympics depends on several things, Fauci said: the number of infections at the time of the event, the percentage of people who come vaccinated, and the precautions officials take around testing and testing requirements. vaccination.
“I don’t know what the officials running the Japan Olympics will do, but all those factors come into play,” Fauci said. “The safest thing Olympic athletes can do is get vaccinated. If they are vaccinated they will be quite sure of not getting infected.
When asked if the Olympics should be held, Fauci replied, “I’m not going to comment on that, John, that’s up to Japanese officials.”
“It depends on what the situation is at the time,” he said when asked if he would feel safe going. “Right now I am vaccinated, so I would feel reasonably safe in any circumstance. There’s no chance in the world that I will have time to go, so it’s a pointless discussion.