His Highness Sheikh Khalid bin Hamad Alkhalifa
Shaikh Khalid backs IOC efforts in hosting Games

BAHRAIN yesterday backed the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in its efforts to ensure the safe organisation of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics scheduled to be held between July 24 and August 9.

Bahrain Olympic Committee (BOC) president Shaikh Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa expressed confidence that the organisation would take the right decision with four months left before the Games start.

Shaikh Khalid, also Supreme Council for Youth and Sports (SCYS) first deputy chairman, saluted the IOC officials’ efforts, led by president Thomas Bach, stressing Bahrain was keen to safeguard the interests of its athletes as the world battles to combat the Covid-19 outbreak.


He made the statement during a teleconference meeting with the Asian national committee presidents which was presided over by Bach.

The meeting was also attended by BOC secretary-general Mohammed Hassan Al Nusuf.

According to current statistics, 57 per cent of athletes have so far qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The delegates discussed whether to endorse the qualification rounds to fill up the remaining 43pc berths or pick athletes depending on their international ratings or continental results.

They also discussed whether to reschedule the remaining qualifying phases and hold them starting April, taking into account the difficulty of training and travelling for athletes.

Shaikh Khalid stressed the importance of reaching a well-thoughtout decision to ensure the safety of the athletes and the good organisation of the Games in Tokyo.

He underlined the need to step up co-operation with the Geneva-based World Health Organisation (WHO) and urged all governments to take the required measures.

He commended the efforts undertaken by the task force which includes the IOC, WHO, Tokyo Olympics Organising Committee and the Japanese government.

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