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HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 April 7 - 13  > Shii: Gov’t should cancel Tokyo Summer Olympics due to rampage of COVID-19 variants at home and abroad
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2021 April 7 - 13 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Shii: Gov’t should cancel Tokyo Summer Olympics due to rampage of COVID-19 variants at home and abroad

April 9, 2021
Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo on April 8 at a press conference in the Diet building said that amid the rampage of COVID-19 variants, what the Suga government should do is to immediately decide on the cancellation of the Summer Olympic Games and concentrate its efforts on putting an end to the pandemic.

Shii made this remark in his comment on the government decision to place Tokyo under a “quasi-emergency” state only 19 days after the termination of a state of emergency.

Asked for the reason why he demands the cancellation of the Tokyo Summer Games, Shii cited his interpellation at the January House of Representatives plenary session and presented three problems: Japan’s vaccination progress is too slow to enable all Japanese people to get jabs before the Games; there is no guarantee that the Summer Games will be held under “fair” conditions; and the government plan to mobilize many medical workers to the Games is unrealistic. He stressed that these problems have yet to be properly addressed.

Shii said, “Not only in Japan but also all over the world, the pandemic situation has become more serious as seen in the examples of India and Brazil. In addition, many new coronavirus strains have been detected across the globe.” He insisted, “There is no guarantee that Japan can hold the Games this summer in a safe and secure manner. The opening of the Tokyo Olympics, in the worst case, could become a major trigger of an explosion of infections both at home and abroad.”

Shii referred to the fact that 10,000 athletes plus their coaches and supporting staff, and team officials take part in the Olympic Games. He said that the holding of such a huge sporting event amid the pandemic will endanger people’s lives, demanding that the Suga government immediately decide to cancel the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.

Along with the cancellation of the Summer Games, Shii requested that the government conduct coronavirus mass testing, provide adequate financial support to struggling individuals and businesses, and implement measures to compensate medical institutions’ loss of income and strengthen healthcare systems.

Past related article:
> Shii in Diet interpellation: Gov’t should devote its attention to end pandemic and give up on holding Summer Olympics [January 22, 2021]
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