The president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has spoken positively about the prospect of the Tokyo Games going ahead next summer despite the ongoing pandemic.

Thomas Bach was speaking at a meeting of IOC representatives and Japanese organisers, and in his opening comments to the media he pointed to the gradual return of live sport around the world and the progress towards a vaccine for Covid-19.

The Games have been pushed back one year but remain in limbo as the world battles against the coronavirus.

“We can see that sport is coming back slowly but surely …. which shows to us, shows to the world that we can organise safe sports events even without a vaccine,” Bach said. “We also have very encouraging news about the development of vaccines.”

Bach and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga spoke by telephone on Wednesday and agreed to cooperate closely to stage a safe and secure Games for athletes and spectators.

“We are sitting together in one boat. The only thing we have to do now is to row in the same direction,” Bach told the meeting, in which Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, Olympics Minister Seiko Hashimoto and other officials participated. 

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