Canada pulls out of 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Paralympics

Canada's decision comes after the International Olympic Committee set a four-week deadline to decide the fate of the Tokyo Olympics scheduled to open in June.

Team Canada said that a decision to participate in the Summer Games in current circumstances goes against the public health advise Canadians are being urged to follow.   -  Getty Images

The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Paralympic Committee (CPC) said on Sunday that Team Canada would not be participating in the Olympic and Paralympic Games in the summer of 2020.

The COC and CPC have called on the International Olympic Committee to consider postponing the games for a year, offering support to conduct the event when the dangers of the pandemic have been addressed.

Canada's decision comes after the International Olympic Committee set a four-week deadline to decide the fate of the Tokyo Olympics scheduled to open in June.

READ: Postponing Tokyo Olympics may become inevitable: Japan PM Abe

"The COC and CPC urgently call on the International Olympic Committee (IOC), and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to postpone the Games for one year and we offer them our full support in helping navigate all the complexities that rescheduling the Games will bring," the committees said in a statement.

"While we recognize the inherent complexities around a postponement, nothing is more important than the health and safety of our athletes and the world community," it added.

Team Canada's statement also emphasised that its decision was taken in view of public health in general. "With COVID-19 and the associated risks, it is not safe for our athletes, and the health and safety of their families and the broader Canadian community for athletes to continue training towards the Games."

READ: IOC sets four-week deadline to decide on postponement of Tokyo Olympics

"In fact, it runs counter to the public health advise which we urge all Canadians to follow."

Sporting bodies in the USA, France and other countries have called on the IOC to reconsider holding the Olympics this year when the coronavirus pandemic has affected more than 337,000 people and killed more than 14,500 people.

(With inputs from Reuters)

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.