Panel head calls for clear explanation on games

The head of the Japanese government's advisory panel on the coronavirus says the Olympics and Paralympics would not normally be held in a situation like the current one in Japan. He called on officials to explain clearly if they go ahead with the Tokyo Games.

Omi Shigeru said to a Diet committee on Wednesday that if the organizers go ahead with the games, they must scale back the events and strengthen management systems as much as possible.

Omi urged officials to provide clear visions and explanations to help motivate people to overcome the current special situation and cooperate.

He spoke about what he and other experts should do if the government, the organizing committee and others make a final decision to go ahead with the games.
Omi said it is the experts' responsibility to assess the games' possible impact on infections in Japan and how risks could be lowered.

The Olympics are scheduled to open in late July, with the Paralympics starting in late August. They were postponed for one year due to the pandemic.