IOC postpones 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games until 2021 over COVID-19 pandemic
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has postponed the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games until the summer of 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic, following a conference call between the organization's President Thomas Bach and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday.
The IOC made the official announcement shortly after the Japanese leader Shinzo Abe held a press conference in which he said the two agreed to postpone Tokyo 2020 for up to a year due to the coronavirus.
According to the IOC's statement, the Tokyo Olympics will be held "not later than summer 2021," and the Games will be named "Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020."
The decision came as no surprise for many after veteran IOC member Dick Pound's revelation on Monday that the inevitability of postponing the Games after the "astonishing" spread of COVID-19 across the globe left the IOC with no other choice.
The phone call on Tuesday came amid mounting pressure from athletes and sports organizations to postpone the Games due to the coronavirus pandemic that is spreading rapidly around the world in the past weeks.
The 2020 Summer Olympics was scheduled to run from July 24 to August 9. Up until March 24, there have been 330,000 confirmed coronavirus cases globally.