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Tokyo 2020 organisers confirmed that there has been a case of Covid-19 at the Tokyo Olympic Village. Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto confirmed that a visitor from abroad who is involved in organising the Games had tested positive. He would not reveal the person’s nationality, citing privacy concerns.
Six days before the opening ceremony, organisers said an unnamed person had tested positive for coronavirus in the Village, where thousands of athletes and officials will stay during the Games.
Japanese media reported that the person who had tested positive was a foreign national. The Games are facing opposition from the Japanese public, who fear a fresh wave of infections.
Seiko Hashimoto, the chief organiser of the Tokyo 2020 Games, said organisers were ready to respond swiftly if there was a wider outbreak.
“We are doing everything to prevent any Covid outbreaks. If we end up with an outbreak we will make sure we have a plan in place to respond,” she said.
Hashimoto conceded that competitors at the Games, which were postponed for a year because of the pandemic, would be anxious about the virus situation — and she vowed that organisers would not hide cases.
“Athletes who are coming to Japan are probably very worried. I understand that,” she said.
“That is the reason why we need to make full disclosure.”
Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto said it was not yet known if the person had been vaccinated against Covid-19.
“We don’t have any information on whether this person was vaccinated or not,” Muto said.
He said competitors at the Games would be tested every day “so if someone tests positive, that person will be isolated immediately whether there are any close contacts or not”.
Athletes are just starting to arrive for the Games which run July 23 through Aug. 8.
Japan’s public has been lukewarm about the Games amid a resurgence in new coronavirus infections and worries that an influx of foreign visitors may help turn the Tokyo Olympics into a super-spreader event, which in turn could put further strain on Japan’s already stretched medical system.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympics, postponed for a year due to the global pandemic, is being held mostly without spectators and under tight quarantine rules.
(With inputs from Agencies)