Osaka leg of Tokyo 2020 Olympic torch relay will not run on public roads, organisers say

FILE PHOTO: Tokyo 2020 Olympic torch relay
FILE PHOTO: The Olympic torch is seen at Hibarigahara Festival Site, during the last leg of the first day of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic torch relay, in Minamisoma, Fukushima prefecture, Japan, March 25, 2021. REUTERS/Issei Kato

April 8, 2021

TOKYO (Reuters) – The Osaka leg of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic torch relay will not run on public roads, the organising committee announced in a statement on Wednesday, due to a surge of COVID-19 cases in the area that triggered a medical state of emergency.

“Tokyo 2020 will arrange for the Osaka segment of the relay to be run in the Expo ’70 Commemorative Park,” a 260 hectare park managed by Osaka prefecture, without any spectators during the event, the statement said.

The western prefecture of Osaka declared a medical state of emergency, asking residents to stay home and avoid unnecessary outings, and counted a record high of 878 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday.

(Reporting by Sakura Murakami; Editing by Christian Radnedge)