The 2020 Tokyo Olympics are expected to be postponed because of the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, one organizing committee member conceded on Monday.
In an interview with Global News, International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound said the organization recognizes there will be consequences of delaying the Olympic Games but has decided to take the move as the virus continues to spread.
“IOC has pulled the trigger on this. There’s going to be a postponement,” Pound said. “But they want to be able to put together all of these very, very complicated elements of a postponement.”
It’s not clear yet when the Games could be held.
The apparent decision comes after the Canadian Olympic Committee and Canadian Paralympic Committee issued statements on Sunday that they would not send Canadian athletes to compete unless the Olympics were postponed for one year.
The Games had been set to start on July 24.
But there are 349,211 worldwide cases of the novel coronavirus and it has so far killed 15,308.
Public health officials around the world are urging widespread social distancing in an effort to stem the spread of the virus, which causes the disease COVID-19.
Concerts, sporting events, international gatherings and other major public gatherings around the world have been cancelled over recent weeks as part of that effort.
In Canada, there are more than 1,400 cases of the virus.
It has caused the deaths of 20 Canadians.
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