Olympics still on, Fifa World Cup? UAE bans sports

By DG staff

LAUSANNE, Switzerland 20 March 2020: The International Olympic Committee (IOC), says it remains fully committed to the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and is seeking to find a solution in a responsible way.

The IOC said on Tuesday that there was no need “for any drastic decisions at this stage” in relation to Tokyo 2020, adding that preparation for the games is changing day by day as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

IOC President Thomas Bach said, “The health and well-being of all those involved in the preparations for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is our number-one concern. All measures are being taken to safeguard the safety and interests of athletes, coaches and support teams. We are an Olympic community; we support one another in good times and in difficult times. This Olympic solidarity defines us as a community.”

The IOC communique noted that a task force was set up in mid-February, consisting of the IOC, the World Health Organisation, the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee, the Japanese authorities and the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, said Wam.

The purpose of the task force is to ensure coordinated actions by all stakeholders, the communique noted, adding that it has the mission to keep a constant appraisal of the situation to form the basis for the ongoing operational planning and necessary adaptations. The task force also monitors the implementation of the various actions decided.

The IOC will continue to follow the guidance of the task force, and the Committee’s decision will not be determined by financial interests, the communique noted.

Fifa set to rearrange Club World Cup due to coronavirus

ZURICH: The Bureau of the Fifa Council chaired by Fifa President Gianni Infantino convened a conference call on Wednesday to address the exceptional circumstances created by the Covid-19 virus outbreak.

Following the conference call, the Bureau has included the new dates of the Conmebol Copa America and the UEFA Euro – 11th June to 11th July 2021 – in the International Match Calendar.

In a statement issued by the bureau, the decisions also included deciding at a later stage when to schedule the new Fifa Club World Cup which was due to take place in June and July 2021. Also, to create a Fifa-Confederations working group, monitoring the evolving situation, working closely together and agreeing on a coordinated approach addressing the consequences of this pandemic.

Fifa pledged a direct contribution of US$10 million to the World Health Organisation Covid-19 Solidarity Response Fund, to ensure these funds are used to support the fight against the virus in all regions of the world.

Commenting on the conference call, Infantino said, “This exceptional situation requires exceptional measures and decisions. This crisis impacts the entire world and that is why solutions need to take into account the interests of all stakeholders around the world. We have shown again today a spirit of cooperation, solidarity and unity. These must be our key drivers moving forward and I would like to thank all the Confederations Presidents for their positive contributions and efforts.

“Fifa will keep in close contact with all stakeholders to assess and take the necessary steps to deal with the variety of issues we are facing. I count on the support of the whole football community moving forward,” he concluded.

UAE General Authority of Sports suspends all sport activities

ABU DHABI: The UAE’s General Authority of Sports (GAS) has announced the suspension of all sporting activities across all sports, including tournaments and competitions.

In a statement, GAS noted that the decision is effective beginning 19th March 2020, and until further notice.

The decision was made to ensure the safety of the UAE community, and in line with continued efforts made by the UAE government and respective bodies to prevent the spread of coronavirus, Covid-19, the GAS statement concluded.