Top Japanese doctors' group calling for Olympics to be canceled -

28 October, Thursday

Top Japanese doctors' group calling for Olympics to be canceled

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A Top Japanese doctors’ group is calling for the Olympics to be canceled a little over two months before the games are set to begin.
“We strongly request that the authorities convince the IOC (International Olympic Committee) that holding the Olympics is difficult and obtain its decision to cancel the Games,” the Tokyo Medical Practitioners Association said in an open letter to Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on May 14, Reuters reported.
Tokyo’s most recent state of emergency due to the coronavirus was extended to May 31 and the healthcare system is struggling with the number of patients coming to the hospitals. 
“The medical institutions dealing with COVID-19 have their hands full and have almost no spare capacity,” the group continued in its letter.
Japan and Olympic officials have insisted that the games can be held safely and have not indicated that they will cancel them. The games were already postponed from last year due to the virus.
The doctors said “Japan will bear the maximum responsibility” if there are more COVID-19 deaths due to the Olympics. 
Along with calls from the doctors, a petition with more than 350,000 signatures calling for the games to be canceled was submitted to Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike last week.
Pfizer has committed to donating coronavirus vaccines to athletes, but many oppose athletes getting special priority access to the vaccine due over other more high-risk people.
Japan has suffered through a slow vaccine rollout and has already seen some coronavirus cases sprout up during the Olympic torch relay through the country.



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