Biden says decisions at the 2020 Olympics ‘must be based on science’ | Instant News


FILE PHOTO: A man wearing a face mask walks in front of a wall decoration featuring the mascot for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics Miraitowa amidst the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Tokyo, Japan, February 3, 2021. REUTERS / Kim Kyung-Hoon

TOKYO (Reuters) – Any decision on hosting the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which was postponed a year due to the coronavirus pandemic, must be based on science, US President Joe Biden said on a radio show.

The Olympics are due to start in less than six months, and the Japanese government and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have vowed to hold them as planned, albeit under strict conditions that could include staging without spectators.

Biden, speaking on the Westwood One Sports radio program that airs on Sunday during the Super Bowl halftime, said he hopes the Olympics will take place, especially for the athletes who have trained hard for them.

“I have spoken with the Japanese prime minister, he is working really hard to be in a safe position to open the Olympics, host the Olympics, and I think it has to be based on science, whether it is safe or not for that to happen,” said Biden.

Biden, who took office in January, said he hated the thought of athletes not being able to compete.

“Imagine all the Olympians who work for four years, four years for one opportunity and suddenly that opportunity is gone,” he said.

“These are people I feel pain in – but we have to do it scientifically,” he added. “We are a science-driven administration, I think the rest of the world is there too. I hope we can play, I hope it is possible, but that remains to be seen. “

The Olympics will open on July 23 and run until August 8.

Reporting by Elaine Lies, editing by Ed Osmond

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