Journalists Covering Tokyo Olympics Will Be FOLLOWED By GPS As Organizers Try To Reassure The Public
Journalists covering the Tokyo Olympics will be FOLLOWED by GPS as organizers try to reassure the public that the event will not be a Covid superspreading event
Overseas journalists covering the Tokyo Olympics will have their movements tracked via GPS and their pass can be revoked if they break the rules.
The organizers of the 2020 Games, which open in just over six weeks, are trying to reassure a skeptical public that the event can be held safely under strict virus rules.
There are about 6000 reporters visiting Japan for the Olympics. They have been tasked with providing a detailed list of the areas they will visit in the first two weeks in Japan, such as sports venues and hotels.
Seiko Hashimoto, head of Tokyo 2020, said tracking technology would be used to ensure they only go where they’re supposed to go.
Tokyo 2020 president Seiko Hashimoto has said foreign journalists covering the games will have their movements tracked by GPS and their passes could be revoked if they break the rules.
“To ensure that people do not go to places other than the places they are registered for, we will use GPS to strictly manage their behavior,” Hashimoto said before a meeting of the board of directors in Tokyo 2020.
Reporters will be urged to stay in designated hotels rather than private accommodations, she added.
The number of hotels will be reduced from an originally planned 350 to about 150, she said, as organizers try to keep visitors under close supervision.
Athletes will also face strict restrictions on their movements and will be tested daily for the virus.
Overseas fans have already been barred from participating in the event, and organizers will decide later this month how many domestic spectators – if any – will be able to watch the competitions.
“Today we are only 45 days away from the opening ceremony, although the state of emergency is in effect and the situation across the country remains dire,” Ms Hashimoto said at the meeting of the board of directors.
Pictured: Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto, right, and CEO Toshiro Muto, left, talk ahead of the start of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Board of Directors meeting held earlier today
The organizers are increasingly opposed to the games. Pictured: A protester holds a sign during a demonstration against the upcoming Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan
“The number of new COVID-19 cases in Tokyo is starting to decrease little by little and we very much hope that the situation will be under control as soon as possible.”
The number of new infections in Tokyo has fallen to about 500 cases a day, compared to 1,000 a month ago.
The number of hospitalizations and critically ill have also decreased, but levels are still higher than last fall when COVID-19 variants were not prevalent in Japan.
Experts from the Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s pandemic panel said last week that the traffic of people in central Tokyo has been increasing for three weeks. They warned that new infections could return if people continue to increase their mobility.
Japan has seen a smaller Covid-19 outbreak than many other countries, but until recently, vaccine rollout has been relatively slow, with about 3.5 percent of the population fully vaccinated so far.
Japan has attributed about 13,500 deaths to COVID-19, good by some standards, but not as low as many countries in Asia.
National polls tend to show that most respondents are against holding the Olympics this summer, supporting either a further postponement or cancellation.