The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games have been postponed until 2021 due to the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic.
In a joint statement, the International Olympic Committee and the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee said that the Games “must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community”.
The announcement followed a phone call earlier on Tuesday between Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe and IOC President Thomas Bach.
“I proposed to postpone for about a year and President Bach responded with 100% agreement,” Abe told reporters. The Tokyo Games will then be held “in a complete form as a testament to mankind’s defeat of the new virus”, he said.
The Olympic flame will stay in Japan until the rescheduled opening ceremony, organisers confirmed, and the Games will keep the name of 2020 Olympics and Paralympics.