Japan To Make Decision On Domestic Spectators At Olympics


Japan will decide this month on whether to allow domestic spectators at the Tokyo Olympics, the government’s chief spokesman said on Wednesday, following media reports a proposal to allow up to 10,000 people at events was under consideration.

The final call will be made taking into account coronavirus infection conditions and the prevalence of virus variants, Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told reporters when asked about the reports.

Japan plans to move forward on a proposal that will allow up to 10,000 spectators or 50% of a venue’s capacity, whichever is smaller, at events during the Games.

Prime Minister’s Yoshihide Suga’s administration is reviewing options such as putting a cap for the number of domestic spectators at 5,000 or 10,000.

Foreign spectators are already prohibited from the Olympics beginning on July 23 as part of measures planned to deliver what Japanese government and Olympic officials promise will be a “safe and secure” Games.

The government’s top medical adviser Shigeru Omi will hold a news conference on coronavirus countermeasures on Wednesday, the Cabinet Office said.

Omi has been outspoken in recent weeks about the risks of holding the Games during a pandemic and has said guidance from him and other experts was not making its way to the International Olympic Committee.

The IOC has tried to quell such concerns by saying that most athletes and media coming to Tokyo will be vaccinated, and that playbooks governing hygiene, movements and testing of participants will further mitigate infection risks.


Chidi Nwoke/Reuters.

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