Tokyo Olympics may allow foreign fans; there will be rules

Toshiro Muto, CEO of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics organizing committee, speaks during a news conference Tuesday, June 11, 2019, in Tokyo. Next year's postponed Tokyo Olympics  if they happen  will be like no other, particularly for non-Japanese fans if they are allowed to enter in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Tokyo organizing committee CEO Muto, after a meeting Thursday, Nov. 12, 2020, about infection countermeasures, confirmed for the first time that a limited number of non-Japanese fans may be allowed to attend. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Toshiro Muto, CEO of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics organizing committee, speaks during a news conference Tuesday, June 11, 2019, in Tokyo. Next year's postponed Tokyo Olympics if they happen will be like no other, particularly for non-Japanese fans if they are allowed to enter in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Tokyo organizing committee CEO Muto, after a meeting Thursday, Nov. 12, 2020, about infection countermeasures, confirmed for the first time that a limited number of non-Japanese fans may be allowed to attend. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) (Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

TOKYO – Next year's re-scheduled Tokyo Olympics will be like no other, particularly for non-Japanese fans if they are allowed to enter in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tokyo organizing committee CEO Toshiro Muto, after a meeting Thursday about infection countermeasures, confirmed for the first time that a limited number of non-Japanese fans may be allowed to attend.

But there will be some stringent guidelines, rule books to follow, and health apps to track fans and monitor the spread of the infection.

“By next spring we will be coming up with measures for all spectators including the non-Japan residents,"Muto said, speaking in Japanese in an on-line briefing. “For the non-Japanese, we need to be sure we secure a spectating opportunity for them as well.”

Initially, Muto said it would be difficult to subject entering fans to a quarantine, and then suggested later it might happen.

“Regarding spectators from overseas, whether they need to go through a 14-day quarantine or not, whether we can waive that or not will depend on the situation, ”Muto said. “There is a possibility this quarantine is waived if they meet certain conditions.”

Organizers and the International Olympic Committee have given themselves at least five more months — into the northern hemisphere spring — to start finalizing how they will pull off the Olympics for 11,000 athletes and tens of thousands of officials, judges, sponsors, media and broadcasters.

It was in early spring this year that the Games were postponed, unable to see a way forward and now set to open on July 23, 2021.