The team behind Tokyo’s bid to host the 2020 Olympics Games is scrambling to save its long and expensive campaign from falling victim to the ongoing crisis at the Fukushima nuclear plant.
The International Olympic Committee will announce the winner of the three-way race to host the XXXII Olympiad at a meeting in Buenos Aires on Saturday, with Tokyo up against Madrid and Istanbul.
The majority of the questions at Wednesday’s opening press conference to promote Tokyo’s bid focused on the impact radiation from the crippled plant would have on athletes and visitors.
“There is no issue here,” Tsunekazu Takeda, president of the Japanese Olympic Committee and head of the Tokyo 2020 Bid Committee, told reporters.
“Not one person in Tokyo has been affected by this issue,” he said. “Tokyo and Fukushima are almost 250 kilometers [155 miles] apart. We are quite remote from Fukushima.
“The water is safe and the level of radioactivity is absolutely safe,” said Takeda, who represented Japan in the equestrian events at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich and again four years later in Montreal, pointing out that the government has announced that it will step in to take over responsibility for the clean-up effort around the plant and for decommissioning the crippled reactors.
Continue reading at Fukushima failures threatening to derail Tokyo’s 2020 Olympics bid