The heads of the World Health Organization and the International Olympic Committee on Saturday pledged to continue working together ahead of the next year's Tokyo Olympics
MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 16th May, 2020) The heads of the World Health Organization and the International Olympic Committee on Saturday pledged to continue working together ahead of the next year's Tokyo Olympics.
"Today's memorandum of understanding builds on a long-standing relationship between the WHO and the IOC ... Sport is a natural partner for the WHO. By its very nature, sport is about participation, bringing individuals, communities and countries together," WHO's Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said ahead of the signing.
Thomas Bach said at the joint news conference that the memorandum offered an opportunity to strengthen collaboration between the two international organizations, which had been going on for 36 years.
Turning to the ongoing pandemic, Bach said the agreement addressed that too because the health crisis had showed how important sport was for general health and how general health was important for combating the virus.
The Summer Games in Japan's Tokyo, which were supposed to be held later this year, were rescheduled to summer 2021 over the pandemic. Bach said that for the first time in the Olympic history the games had been postponed to make them safer for all the participants.
"We are really counting on you and your team. We are looking forward to this effort to make these Olympic Games," Bach said, addressing the WHO chief.
He said the IOC will make the necessary decisions about how to protect games participants from the virus with WHO's advise. He admitted that nobody could make a reliable prediction about how the world will look like in July 2021.
"It is too early to start speculation on different scenarios and what it may need at the time to guarantee this safe environment... We will adapt to the safety needs, whatever they will be at the time of the games," Bach added.
The WHO boss said he hoped that Tokyo would be a place where humanity would gather with triumph against the coronavirus disease. He called for "national unity and global solidarity" in the fight against COVID-19.