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IOC 'Remains Fully Committed' to 2020 Tokyo Olympics amid Coronavirus Outbreak

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistMarch 17, 2020

Olympic Rings are seen next to the headquarters of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in Lausanne on March 17, 2020, amid the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19). - The International Olympic Committee is holding high-level talks as doubts grow over the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and with some in Japan urging officials not to risk lives by pressing ahead during the coronavirus emergency. (Photo by FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP) (Photo by FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images)
FABRICE COFFRINI/Getty Images

The International Olympic Committee has announced it "remains fully committed" to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo as the sporting world faces the challenges of the coronavirus outbreak.

In a statement on their official website, the IOC said it will continue to hold consultations with organisers and stakeholders, but the current intention is the games will go ahead beginning July 24:

"The situation around the COVID-19 virus is also impacting the preparations for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and is changing day by day.

"The IOC remains fully committed to the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and with more than four months to go before the Games there is no need for any drastic decisions at this stage; and any speculation at this moment would be counter-productive.

"The IOC encourages all athletes to continue to prepare for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 as best they can."

The Olympics remain one of the few scheduled events to hold its current start date after the global response to the coronavirus pandemic.

UEFA announced Tuesday it would postpone this summer's Euro 2020 competition, which was set to be played across multiple venues across Europe for the first time.

In their statement, the IOC promised to "protect the health of everyone involved and to support the containment of the virus."

The Olympic body are part of a task force with the World Health Organization and will continue their collaboration with Japanese authorities on whether the competition can take place.

The IOC added "57 per cent of the athletes are already qualified for the Games," and the remaining places will be decided in due course after further discussions regarding qualification.

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