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The International Olympic Committee and Tokyo officials have confirmed that spectators will be allowed to watch the games. Tokyo Olympics president Seiko Hashimoto called the latest decision “the last piece for the Olympics” to proceed on July 23.
Each event can have fans of 50% capacity, with a cap of 10,000 spectators. However, this announcement comes with several caveats, such as:
- Only fans who live in Japan will be able to watch the events, according to New York Post. Japan’s borders have been closed to international tourists.
- It will be a lottery to see who can attend. Organizing committee CEO Toshiro Muto said that 3.64 million tickets were sold to Japanese residents. He added that was about 900,000 more than the seats likely to be available, according to the report by The Asahi Shimbun.
- The decision may be overturned if infections in Japan surge. “We need to be very flexible. If there is any abrupt change in the situation, we will hold five-party meetings again to make other decisions,” Hashimoto said. “If there is an announcement of a state of emergency during the Games, all the options like no-spectator games will be examined.”
The upcoming Tokyo Olympics has been a controversial topic in Japan as people have divided opinion on whether to hold the games a year after it was postponed. Japan has been grappling with several waves of COVID infection amid the slow roll-out of vaccines.
According to a survey conducted by a Japanese newspaper last May. 43% of Japanese people think that the Olympics should be cancelled, 40% said that it should be postponed again. Meanwhile, only 14% supported the games to go this summer. The IOC and Japanese officials are adamant to hold the games.
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