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US bats for postponement of 2020 Tokyo Olympics

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The United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) batted for the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics saying that option is the 'most promising' as coronavirus plagues the world.

"We are thankful to the 1,780 Team USA athletes for sharing their voice and honest input with us as we address the issues related to COVID-19 and the Tokyo Games, and make good on our promise to put athletes first. We are now confident that we have heard a wide range of viewpoints and understand the diversity of challenges our athletes face. We regret that there is no outcome that can solve all the concerns we face," USOPC Chair Susanne Lyons And CEO Sarah Hirshland said in a statement.

"Our most important conclusion from this broad athlete response is that even if the current significant health concerns could be alleviated by late summer, the enormous disruptions to the training environment, doping controls and qualification process can't be overcome in a satisfactory manner. To that end, it's more clear than ever that the path toward postponement is the most promising, and we encourage the IOC to take all needed steps to ensure the Games can be conducted under safe and fair conditions for all competitors," the statement added.

Coronavirus has taken a huge toll on all across the globe and there is an ongoing debate whether or not the upcoming quadrennial event should go ahead as planned or not.

Also, the Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC) on Monday announced they will not send their teams to the Olympic and Paralympic Games in the summer of 2020 due to the pandemic.

The Tokyo Olympic Games are slated to be held from July 24 to August 9, while the Paralympic Games are scheduled to be held from August 25 to September 6.

Earlier, IOC said they will make a decision in four weeks time period as the countries around the world are reeling with the coronavirus pandemic. However, the body emphasised that 'cancellation is not on the agenda'.

"The IOC will, in full coordination and partnership with the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee, the Japanese authorities and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, start detailed discussions to complete its assessment of the rapid development of the worldwide health situation and its impact on the Olympic Games, including the scenario of postponement," IOC said in a statement.

"The IOC is confident that it will have finalised these discussions within the next four weeks, and greatly appreciates the solidarity and partnership of the NOCs and IFs in supporting the athletes and adapting Games planning. The IOC EB emphasised that a cancellation of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 would not solve any of the problems or help anybody. Therefore, cancellation is not on the agenda," the statement added.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, March 24 2020. 13:28 IST
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