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The Athletics Association made up of professional track and field athletes is the latest organization to put pressure on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to postpone the 2020 Tokyo Olympics Games.
Canada was the first nation to declare that athletes will not participate in the 2020 edition, but will in 2021 if the Games are postponed. The Canada announcement came a day after the Norwegian Olympic Committee penned an open letter to the IOC, requesting a delay. The Australians followed suit on Monday.
Sebastian Coe president of World Athletics followed up with a letter penned directly to the president of the IOC Thomas Bach also requesting the Games be delayed to 2021. He wrote that the 2020 edition that is still on the schedule, “’Whilst we all know that different parts of the world are at different stages of the virus, the unanimous view across all our areas is that an Olympic Games in July this year is neither feasible nor desirable,’
Several athletes have spoken up over social media that the pandemic is bigger than the Games.
The Athletics Association president is former athlete Christian Taylor. In a statement that cited more than 4000 athletes were surveyed, “is calling on the IOC to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.”
They also asked that the announcement happen much earlier than the current four-week time frame.
“The Olympics is the pinnacle for all competitors in the sport of athletics, but asking athletes to risk their physical and mental health preparing for an Olympic Games in the middle of a pandemic that is crippling the world is unfair, immoral and shows a huge lack of empathy.”
The man who created the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and is a former vice-president and current member of the International Olympic Committee has said, out of turn, according to some IOC members that the Games will be postponed.
According to Worldmeter at www.worldmeter.info/coronavirus, there are currently 399,093 cases globally of COVID-19, while there have been 17,365 deaths recorded and 103, 745 people have recovered.