IOC, IPC Respect Japan's Decision on Overseas Spectators


London, March 20 (Jiji Press)--The International Olympic Committee and the International Paralympic Committee expressed their full support Saturday for Japan's decision not to allow spectators from abroad for this summer's Tokyo Games amid the continuing novel coronavirus pandemic.

"For the reason of the safety of every games participant and the Japanese people, their conclusion is fully respected and accepted by the IOC and the IPC," the IOC said in a statement.

"We share the disappointment of all enthusiastic Olympic fans from around the world, and of course the families and friends of the athletes, who were planning to come to the games," IOC President Thomas Bach said.

"I am truly sorry," he said, adding, "We know that this is a great sacrifice for everybody." But he stated: "We have also said that the first principle is safety. Every decision has to respect the principle of safety first. I know that our Japanese partners and friends did not reach this conclusion lightly."

"We stand shoulder to shoulder at the side of our Japanese partners and friends" to make the Tokyo Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games a great success, he said.

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