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With the Tokyo Olympics days away, officers report the primary virus circumstances contained in the athletes’ village.



With the opening ceremonies for the Tokyo Olympic Video games set for Friday, organizers reported greater than two dozen optimistic coronavirus checks this weekend amongst individuals who have traveled to Japan for the occasion, together with the primary circumstances contained in the athletes’ village.

On Saturday, officers reported the primary optimistic take a look at — for an organizer — contained in the village, the place hundreds of individuals can be staying. On Sunday, they reported that two athletes had examined optimistic contained in the village. A 3rd athlete examined optimistic whereas in quarantine. Different circumstances had been reported exterior the village this weekend, involving officers, contractors and members of the news media.

In a press release on Sunday, the South African Soccer Affiliation confirmed that three individuals related to the lads’s Olympic soccer workforce had examined optimistic: one official and two gamers, Thabiso Monyane and Kamohelo Mahlatsi. It was unclear whether or not these had been the circumstances reported by Olympic officers, who didn’t disclose any names or nationalities.

As well as, the British Olympics Affiliation confirmed on Sunday that six British monitor and subject athletes and two workers members are in quarantine on the workforce’s preparation camp after being recognized as shut contacts of a person who examined optimistic on their flight to Japan. “The group all examined unfavourable on the airport and have continued to check unfavourable upon arrival into the nation,” the affiliation stated.

Olympic officers defended their security protocols on Sunday, saying a strict testing routine minimized the danger of outbreaks. At a news convention, Pierre Ducrey, operations director for the Olympic Video games, stated that since July 1, greater than 18,000 individuals had arrived in Japan from abroad and greater than 30,000 checks had been carried out.

“That is most likely essentially the most managed inhabitants at this cut-off date wherever on the earth,” he stated.

Regardless of the measures being taken, public opinion polls in Japan have proven tepid help for going forward with the Video games, which had been already postponed by a yr, and a nationwide surge in circumstances has solid an extra pall over the occasion. After barring worldwide spectators in March, organizers stated this month that home spectators could be barred as properly.

Tokyo is now underneath its fourth state of emergency for the reason that pandemic started, with this one set to final till after the Video games finish on Aug. 8. Town is seeing its highest case numbers in months, reporting greater than 1,000 new infections for a fifth consecutive day on Sunday.

Fears of a brand new outbreak fueled by Olympic guests have been intensified by the gradual begin to Japan’s inoculation marketing campaign, with solely about 20 p.c of its 126 million individuals absolutely vaccinated towards the virus, based on a New York Instances database.

New precautionary measures proceed to be introduced within the days main as much as the Video games. They embrace modifications to the medal ceremony, introduced final week, that require athletes to position their gold, silver or bronze medals round their very own necks reasonably than settle for them from presenters. The medals can be laid out on trays carried by the presenters for the athletes to select up in a course of designed to be utterly contactless. The presenters can be absolutely vaccinated, officers stated.

The rostrum will even be bigger this yr to make sure social distancing amongst medalists, who’re required to remain on their very own podium modules all through the ceremony. Olympic officers had beforehand introduced that masks could be necessary for each medalists and presenters.

Some athletes nonetheless determined to keep away from the Video games. They embrace two Australians: the tennis player Nick Kyrgios, who cited misgivings concerning the lack of spectators, and the basketball player Liz Cambage, who stated she apprehensive concerning the impact that being confined to the Olympic “bubble” would have on her psychological well being.


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