Olympic athletes WON’T need Covid-19 vaccine to participate in Tokyo 2020 games, organisers reveal – and stars are asked to ‘clap rather than cheer and sing’ when watching team-mates
- There have been growing fears over whether Olympics can take place in summer
- There has been a recent spike in infections in Japan and across the world
- But Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori insisted Games will happen regardless
- Now Games’ organisers have given detailed Covid guidelines to the athletes
- Organisers revealed that athletes won’t need to have had the Covid vaccine
There have been growing fears over whether the Olympics will take place this summer following a recent spike in infections in Japan and across the world, but on Wednesday athletes and fans were given a taste of what to expect in Tokyo.
It had previously been reported that all athletes would need to be vaccinated against Covid in a bid to save the Games and compete in Tokyo but that idea has been quashed by organisers.
Athletes are not required to get the Covid vaccination before flying out to the Olympics
Athletes must be tested 72 hours before leaving for Japan, and then again on arrival
As organisers set out a series of measures in the IOC’s first ‘Playbook’, it was revealed that athletes are in fact not required to be vaccinated ahead of the Olympics – which are due to begin on July 23 and end on August 8.
Guidelines in place for athletes and officials include that the travelling party must be tested 72 hours before leaving their respective country, and then again on arriving in Japan.
Furthermore, athletes will be tested every four days at the Games while face masks must be worn at all times unless they are outdoors or two metres away from each other.
The organisers also revealed that there will be additional requirements in place for the first 14 days in Japan, but this is yet unclear whether they are talking about quarantine.
And those in attendance at events must support athletes competing by clapping only and not singing or chanting.
There have been growing fears over the Olympics not taking place amid the ongoing crisis
While testing was the main topic regarding measures in Tokyo, the travelling party were warned that they must stay in their bio-secure bubble throughout the Games.
Those involved at the Tokyo Games cannot ‘visit tourist areas, shops, restaurants or bars, or gyms’ and must avoid public transport at all costs.
And finally, athletes and officials need to also ‘avoid unnecessary forms of physical contact such as hugs, high-fives and handshakes.’
The initial ‘Playbook’ is broadly aimed at international federations and technical officials, with more specific editions, aimed at athletes, media and broadcasters, set for release in the coming days.
On Wednesday, IOC executive director Christophe Dubi said: ‘The health and safety of everyone at the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 are our top priority.
‘We each have our part to play. That’s why these Playbooks have been created – with the rules that will make each and every one of us a sound, safe and active contributor to the Games.
Those in attendance at Olympic events can only clap, and are not allowed to sing or chant
‘We know these Olympic Games will be different in a number of ways. For all Games participants, there will be some conditions and constraints that will require flexibility and understanding.
‘By committing to following the Playbooks we will be stronger together. In return, the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 will be remembered as a historic moment for humanity, the Olympic Movement and all those contributing to their success.’
‘We will hold the Olympics, regardless of how the coronavirus (situation) looks,’ Mori said, adding that the discussion should focus on how, not whether, the Olympics will happen.
‘We must consider new ways of hosting the Olympics as a part of that,’ he added.
Tokyo 2020 president Yoshiro Mori is very confident that the Games will go ahead as normal