Tokyo Olympics should be held at any cost, says Japanese minister

The delayed Tokyo Olympics should be held next year "at any cost", Japan's Olympic minister Seiko Hashimoto said yesterday.

"For the Games next year, athletes are continuing to work hard in the environments they find themselves in. So I feel we have to hold it at any cost," she said.

Hashimoto was responding to remarks by International Olympic Committee (IOC) vice-president John Coates, who told AFP that the Games, from July 23 to Aug 8 next year, would go ahead "with or without Covid".

Hashimoto added: "I think Mr Coates felt reassured that the Tokyo Games can be held with further close coordination of efforts."

A spokesman for the organisers declined to comment directly on Coates' remarks.

Japan's borders are still largely closed to foreign visitors and a vaccine is still some time away, raising doubt over the Games' feasibility. - AFP