Washington, District of Columbia 2021-05-01 03:11:29 –
Tokyo (AP) — The Tokyo Olympics torch relay will make a further detour this weekend as it enters the southern islands …
Tokyo (AP) — The Tokyo Olympics torch relay will make a further detour this weekend as it enters the southern islands of Okinawa.
The relay section of Miyakojima, a resort island in Okinawa set on Sunday, was completely canceled due to a surge in Japan. Other legs in Okinawa will also be held.
A 17-day state of emergency came into effect on April 25, occurring in some parts of Japan where department stores and bars in the second largest cities in Tokyo and Osaka were closed.
Dr. Hayako Shimizu of Miyakojima told The Associated Press, “I don’t want people from outside the island to come in. Human life is at stake.”
The relay, with 10,000 runners from all over Japan, started six weeks ago and was held almost as planned, despite major route changes in Osaka and Matsuyama, Ehime Prefecture.
The relay consists of a convoy of about 12 vehicles with sponsor names such as Coca-Cola, Toyota Motor, and Nippon Life Insurance. The torchbearers will follow, each running for a few minutes and then burning to the next runner waiting to grab another torch.
The torch relay is asking questions about uncertainty, constant change, and why and how it is done, as in the postponed Olympic plans that kick off on July 23. It’s full.
A six-day on and off dive event was held in Tokyo on Saturday with 225 athletes from 46 countries, but no fans.
It was not immediately clear where the athlete was staying and, if any, under what quarantine conditions he entered Japan. Also, the number of staff who accompanied the diver is unknown.
The organizer in Tokyo, who was contacted by the AP, said, “I understand that athletes are entering Japan based on the guidelines provided by JASF (Japan Swimming Federation) and approved by FINA.”
He also introduced contacting FINA and local swimmers.
FINA’s World Governance Organization has listed one of the divers as former Olympic bronze medalist Tom Daley of the United Kingdom. However, other divers came from different countries such as Mexico, Germany, Canada, Romania, Colombia, Japan, Malaysia, Ukraine and Russia.
The dive event is one of several tests this month, all without fans. The organizers say they will determine the number of fans who can participate in the Olympics in June. Fans from abroad are already banned.
At a briefing on Friday, game distribution manager Hidemasa Nakamura opposed repeated reports that the venue would be empty.
“Of course, we are considering the possibility of having an audience,” he said.
Nakamura also said the focus was on “how safe the game can be held” rather than whether it should take place during a pandemic.
Others are less confident about bringing 15,000 Olympic and Paralympic athletes to Japan.
One is Hayley Wickenheiser of Canada, who was a four-time Olympic gold medalist in ice hockey just graduated from medical school. Wickenheiser was also a member of the IOC Athletes Committee and was one of the first years to say that the Olympics should be postponed.
“I want to see the game happen, it will be a great message of hope for the world, but I think we need to remember that we are always in the middle of it now.” Wickenheiser said in an interview with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
Wickenheiser hinted that she was probably the “black sheep” of the Olympic world, but added that “I really don’t care.”
“I think the IOC wants to keep the game going no matter what,” Wickenheiser said. “Some of me want to believe that the plan is good, but some of me have also seen what has happened since the beginning of the pandemic, and I I question some motives. I have money, I have power, I have politics … And many ego are involved. “
Dr. Shigeru Omi, who heads the Japanese government’s panel on coronavirus response, warned parliamentary commissions Wednesday that the virus was spreading and stressing hospitals.
Organizers of the Olympics have stated that they will need about 10,000 medical professionals during the Olympics, and recently authorities have requested an additional 500 nurses. Nursing groups immediately protested that they were used as pawns.
“The infection is definitely spreading, including in developing countries, so it’s important to fully understand this situation and know that it’s definitely at risk,” Omi said.
“The (Olympic) organizers and stakeholders are responsible for starting to think seriously about how the infection is spreading, seriously thinking about the thinning of the healthcare system, and then informing the general public. The time has come. “
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