After a year of delay due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch relay began today, March 25th 2021, signalling Japan’s willingness to go forward with the event despite heavy resistance to the games due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
The Tokyo Olympic Games torch relay began in Minamisoma, Fukushima, Japan. The torch relay started in Fukushima Prefecture, which was devastated by a powerful earthquake in 2011 that resulted in a tsunami and nuclear disaster. The relay will last four months and involve thousands of runners and will conclude at the National Stadium in Tokyo during the official opening ceremony on July 23.
Many fans will have to enjoy the 2020 games from afar as overseas spectators will be prohibited from attending. Officials hope the move will mitigate widespread concerns in Japan that the games could catalyze further Covid-19 outbreaks.
Since foreign visitors will be barred from watching the 2020 games, many viewers will have to watch them from afar. Officials hope that the move would allay fears in Japan that the games could cause further Covid-19 outbreaks.
Before the pandemic, the Olympics had only ever been cancelled twice, during World Wars I and II. Hosting the Olympic Games have several economic benefits for a country such as revenue from ticket sales, licensing, increased employment, broadcast revenue, sponsorships and increased tourism.
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