The deadly Wuhan coronavirus outbreak could impact Japan’s preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics this summer, a senior organizer has warned.
The virus has infected over 28,000 people across more than 25 countries and territories, and claimed more than 560 lives — the vast majority of cases and all but two deaths in mainland China. At least 45 cases have been reported in Japan, including 20 people on board a cruise ship quarantined in Yokohama Bay.
“I am extremely worried that the spread of the infectious disease could throw cold water on the momentum toward the Games,” said Toshiro Muto, chief executive of the Tokyo Olympic organizing committee, according to Japanese public broadcaster NHK. “I hope that it will be stamped out as soon as possible.”
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe stated Monday that the Games would proceed as planned.