People in Disaster Areas in Japan Pin Hopes on Rescheduled Olympics

Society Lifestyle

Fukushima, March 25 (Jiji Press)--People in northeastern Japan areas devastated by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami expressed hopes on Wednesday that a rescheduled Tokyo Olympics will showcase progress in reconstruction to the world next year.

The International Olympic Committee said Tuesday that the 2020 Tokyo Games were postponed for about a year, in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The games are billed as the Reconstruction Olympics.

"A postponed Tokyo Olympics must be held in a perfect form," said Noriyuki Suzuki, 55, a resident of Ishinomaki in Miyagi Prefecture, who lost his 12-year-old daughter in the tsunami.

Suzuki was waiting to run in a disaster area as an Olympic torch bearer. "I'm a bit relieved" after hearing that the games were postponed, he said, referring to reported plans to carry the Olympic flame in a lantern by car instead of by runners in the torch relay.

"We can communicate our respective thoughts to many people by fulfilling our roles as torch runners," he said. "The games can't be called the Reconstruction Olympics if the flame is transported by car."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press