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Tokyo 2020 Olympics: Japan might prioritize Olympic athletes for COVID-19 vaccine, stories present

IOC President Thomas Bach stated vaccination was not a requirement for athletes collaborating within the Tokyo Video games, however Olympic officers would encourage members to obtain the vaccine.

Consultant picture. AP

Tokyo: Japan plans to prioritize its Olympic athletes coronavirus vaccines, geared toward getting them vaccinated earlier than the opening of the Tokyo Video games, postponed by the pandemic, on July 23, native media stated Thursday.

The Japanese authorities has denied that such a plan is being thought of, however stated it might “carefully comply with discussions” on defending the well being of athletes.

The reported transfer drew criticism on-line, with a Japanese Twitter person demanding, “Give it to my grandmother first!”

Vaccine rollout in Japan is progressing slowly, with only one million first doses given to medical staff thus far since injections started in February.

Seniors will not begin receiving doses till subsequent week, and thus far Japan has solely accredited the Pfizer vaccine.

A date has not but been set for the vaccination of your complete inhabitants, however the authorities is now contemplating giving each vaccines to Japanese athletes by the top of June, Kyodo information company reported, citing nameless authorities sources.

Personal broadcaster Nippon TV and different retailers additionally reported on the plan, with some stating that the proposed schedule would imply wholesome younger athletes would end their vaccinations earlier than a few of Japan’s older individuals.

Authorities spokesman Katsunobu Kato stated there was “no truth within the declare that the federal government is contemplating such a plan and the federal government has no plans to debate it at this. Stadium.”

However he instructed reporters that the federal government would “carefully comply with discussions on athlete well being points” between Olympic officers, Tokyo Video games organizers and host metropolis Tokyo.

On-line, the stories have been criticized, with a Japanese Twitter person calling “all athletes to come back out and say they will not.”

“Are you going to thank the outdated and sick individuals who died as a result of their vaccines had been late for giving their lives for the Olympics?” one other requested.

Japan has skilled a comparatively small virus outbreak, with simply over 9,200 deaths for the reason that begin of the pandemic.

However infections have not too long ago elevated in a number of elements of the nation, together with Osaka in western Japan, which has determined to ban the Olympic torch relay from public roads within the prefecture.

Polls present {that a} majority of Japanese need the Video games canceled or postponed additional, though help for them this 12 months has elevated barely, to under 30%.

IOC President Thomas Bach stated vaccination was not a requirement for athletes collaborating within the Tokyo Video games, however Olympic officers would encourage members to obtain the vaccine.

The IOC plans to supply secure vaccines from China to athletes in nations with out entry.

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