A member of the Serbian Olympic rowing team tested positive for COVID-19 as he tried to enter Japan for the Tokyo Olympics which will open in just under three weeks
Through STEPHEN WADE AP Sports Writer
July 4, 2021, 7:23 a.m.
• 2 minutes to read
TOKYO – A member of the Serbian Olympic rowing team tested positive for COVID-19 as he attempted to enter Japan for the Tokyo Olympics which are due to open in just under three weeks.
The news was reported by Japan’s Kyodo agency on Sunday and cited officials from the Japanese Ministry of Health.
Officials said the athlete was isolated at Haneda Airport in Tokyo. Four other passengers were reportedly transferred to a facility near the airport. They were to go to a training camp in Nanto, in central Japan. Nanto officials said the training camp was subject to cancellation.
The report comes after two members of the Ugandan Olympic delegation tested positive for the coronavirus last month upon arrival in Japan. One of them tested positive at Narita Airport near Tokyo, but the rest of the team were allowed to go to a training site.
A second member of the delegation was later found to be infected with the virus.
Seiko Hashimoto, the chair of the organizing committee, said on Friday that more than 500 participants arrived in Tokyo without incident. Approximately 11,000 Olympic athletes and 4,400 Paralympic athletes will arrive for the Olympics, along with tens of thousands of other Olympic coaches, judges and officials.
Organizers have yet to decide whether to allow local fans to enter theaters. Fans from overseas were banned months ago.
Almost two weeks ago, organizers announced they would allow indoor and outdoor venues to be filled to 50% capacity, up to 10,000.
But with new infections increasing daily in Tokyo for two weeks, local organizers are expected to meet this week with the International Olympic Committee and others and lower the cap, or remove spectators altogether.
Japanese media have reported many possible scenarios: they include: no fans at all; no fans at the opening ceremony on July 23; limits on fans at nighttime events; by lowering the limit on all sites to 5,000.
Dr. Shigeru Omi, one of the government’s top medical advisers, has repeatedly stated that no ventilator is the safest option. He also asked why the Olympics are being held in the midst of a pandemic. He called it “abnormal”.
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