On Thursday, Tokyo 2020 president Seiko Hashimoto said she is “100% certain” the controversial Games will go ahead. However, she also made it clear that the event “must be prepared” to take place without spectators present in the event of a coronavirus outbreak.
These statements come 50 days before the start of the Olympics, scheduled for 23 July.
“I believe that the possibility of these Games going on is 100% that we will do this. The question right now is how are we going to have an even more safe and secure Games,” she said in an interview with BBC Sport.
At the moment, the event has a low popularity among the Japanese population, while the country is dealing with a fourth wave of coronavirus cases. A total of 10 areas are under a state of emergency.
In response to the negative feedback, Hashimoto expressed her opinion: “The Japanese people are feeling very insecure and at the same time probably feel some frustration at us talking about the Olympics and I think that is giving rise to more voices opposing having the Games in Tokyo”.
According to Hashimoto, the most important challenge will be how “the flow of people” is managed.
She also stressed the importance of creating a “safe and secure space” during the event.