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Coronavirus Information Report

Canada has become the first nation to decide against sending athletes to the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Toyko due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The Canadian Olympic Committee and Canadian Paralympic Committee released a joint statement this evening (March 22) regarding their decision saying, “This is not solely about athlete health—it is about public health. 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 for these Games. In fact, it runs counter to the public health advice which we urge all Canadians to follow.”

Canada’s decision not to send athletes to the Olympic and Paralympic games comes after early speculation of the postponement of the 2020 games in Toyko. In a February interview with the Associated Presslongest-serving International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Dick Pound said that if the coronavirus outbreak isn’t under control by late May, the entire Tokyo Olympics could be canceled.

“In and around that time, I’d say folks are going to have to ask: ‘Is this under sufficient control that we can be confident about going to Tokyo or not?'” said Pound. “A lot of things have to start happening [closer to the start of the Olympic Games.] You’ve got to start ramping up your security, your food, the Olympic Village, the hotels. The media folks will be in there building their studios.”

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Erica Banas is rock/classic rock news blogger who's well versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice.