Olympic President Bach to visit Japan in May to meet Prime Minister Suga

© Reuters. IOC President Bach meets Greek Prime Minister Mitsotakis in Athens

TOKYO (Reuters) – International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach will visit Japan in May, Kyodo News reported on Saturday, as the country works to contain an outbreak of COVID-19 cases ahead of start of the Games.

Bach will attend a torch relay ceremony in the western city of Hiroshima on May 17 and meet with Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga the next day, Kyodo said, citing sources familiar with the matter. Bach should support Japan’s commitment to safely host the Summer Games, Kyodo reported.

“We are aware of President Bach’s intention to come to Japan and we would welcome such a visit,” the Tokyo Olympic Organizing Committee said in a statement. “However, nothing concrete has been decided.”

Representatives for the Tokyo Olympics could not be reached when asked to comment outside of regular business hours.

Less than 100 days before the start of the Olympics in Tokyo, Japan on Friday extended near-urgent measures to 10 regions as a fourth wave of COVID-19 cases spread.

Suga, who is on a state visit to the United States, told a press conference on Friday that he told President Joe Biden that he is committed to moving the Games forward and that Biden is offering his support.

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