The IOC has pronounced on the vaccination of athletes participating in the Tokyo Olympics.
Andrej ISAKOVIC / AFP
The International Olympic Committee wants to "help" participants in the Tokyo Olympics to be vaccinated against Covid-19, but does not intend to claim priority access for athletes, he said Tuesday.
"The IOC continues to firmly support the priority of vaccination of vulnerable groups, caregivers, doctors and all those who ensure the maintenance and security of our societies," said the body in a press release.
The Olympic organization therefore excludes making the holding of the event, scheduled for July 23 to August 8, conditional on the systematic vaccination of athletes, which appeared both uncertain from a practical standpoint and questionable from an ethical standpoint.
Despite the proliferation of variants of Covid-19 and the worsening of the pandemic, the IOC maintains that vaccines are "one of the many tools" in its health panoply, but not the decisive weapon.
The organizers of the Olympics also rely on "specific immigration procedures, quarantine measures, the implementation of tests, the provision of personal protective equipment and contact tracing".
In a second step only, "once the vaccination is available to a wider public", the body will call on the Olympic and Paralympic delegations "to be vaccinated in their country of residence, in accordance with national guidelines".
"Not enough vaccines for people at risk", warns WHO
Concretely, the IOC will ask by mail to the 206 national Olympic committees "to actively approach their respective governments" and to report "at the beginning of February" to the organization based in Lausanne.
For the time being, access to vaccines remains very uneven from one country to another, depending on the availability of doses and government priorities: the vaccination campaign will not start until the end of February in Japan, where public opinion is increasingly hostile to the holding of the Games.
Associated with the preparation of the Olympics, the World Health Organization (WHO) recalled Monday that there is currently "not enough vaccines for people at risk", and that it is above all "d 'use this scarce resource to combat one of the most devastating health crises of our time.
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