The Olympic torch relay should avoid the metropolis of Osaka (western Japan) due to a further increase in Covid-19 infections, the local governor said Thursday.
“I personally think that the torch relay in the city of Osaka should be canceled,” noted Hirofumi Yoshimura, believing that “requests to avoid non-essential and non-emergency outings must be scrupulously respected during the period of measures. more stringent ”.
Mr. Yoshimura made the statements as the Japanese government prepares to impose new measures to combat Covid-19 in parts of Osaka and two other departments.
According to local media, Osaka Mayor Ichiro Matsui also wants the Olympic Torch Relay to avoid the city. “It’s very unfortunate, but the torch relay must be canceled,” he said.
The Olympic torch relay kicked off on March 25 in Fukushima (northeastern Japan), with organizers hoping it will help build enthusiasm for these Games affected by the global health crisis.
The flame is scheduled to pass through Osaka County on April 13 and 14, starting with Sakai City and ending with Osaka City.
Tokyo 2020 Games organizers said on Thursday that they were delaying announcing the torchbearers and details of the Osaka Prefecture route, which were due to be released today.
Coronavirus infections have increased in the departments of Osaka and Hyogo (west) and Miyagi (northeast).
The government is expected to officially announce new restrictions for these areas during the day, which will allow local authorities to ask some businesses to close earlier or face fines.
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