By Joe Apu
Fears of another shift in date or an outright cancellation of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games reverberated Saturday as Japan announced emergency COVID- 19 measures in the host city Tokyo and three other areas in a bid to curb rising infections, just 90 days before the country is set to host the world.
According to reports on insidethegames.com, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has also imposed emergency measures, which include banning fans from attending sports events and preventing bars and restaurants from serving alcohol, in the western prefectures of Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo.
The tougher restrictions will be in place until at least May 11, with the Golden Week set to run from April 29 to May 5.
“We will implement short and intensive measures during Golden Week, strengthening steps related to eating establishments and temporarily halting the flow of people,” said Suga.
Under the emergency measures, eating establishments will be asked to close by 8pm, while shops and cinemas will be temporarily closed.
Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike said she will also ask smaller businesses such as gyms to shut down.
Nippon Professional Baseball has decided to hold all matches in the affected areas behind closed doors until the state of emergency lifts next month.
Under the measures, bars will be required to close and big sporting events will be held without spectators.
The government has insisted that the Olympics will go ahead in July.