Tokyo Olympics: There will be no torch relay on public roads due to COVID-19 concerns

The Tokyo Olympics official said on Wednesday that the Olympic torch relay has been scrapped off from Tokyo’s public roads, as COVID-19 fears continue to plague the Games just over two weeks before they begin. The Tokyo government said that the relay will be replaced by the private flame-lighting ceremonies across the capital beginning Friday.

On July 23 the opening ceremony will be streamed online though which the audience can watch them in their home comfortably. Only the relay led in the Ogasawara islands – a remote archipelago some 1,000 km south of Tokyo – will go ahead as scheduled.

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The torch relay nationwide has been dealing with problems since it began in March along with half the legs disrupted in some way. The relay was to be held in famous tourist cities such as Kyoto and Hiroshima, but due to COVID-19 fears, the torch relay had to be scrapped.

Olympic organisers are still deciding on how many domestic fans can be allowed to attend the postponed Games and have warned that events could be held behind closed doors. Due to COVID-19 scars, overseas fans are restricted to enter Tokyo Games. The government is expected to extend anti-virus measures in Tokyo this week along with a decision to allow Olympic fans.