Tokyo Olympics
National banners hang from balconies at the Olympic athletes' village in Tokyo on Saturday. Photo: AP/Charlie Riedel
tokyo 2020 olympics

1st case of COVID-19 detected in Tokyo Olympic Village

45 Comments
By STEPHEN WADE

The first case of a resident of the Olympic Village testing positive for COVID-19 has been reported, Tokyo Olympic organizers said on Saturday.

Officials said it was not an athlete with the the Games opening in just under a week on July 23.

Tokyo officials including Seiko Hashimoto, the president of the organizing committee, confirmed the case and said the positive test was Friday. Organizers say for confidentiality purposes they can only offer a vague description and few details.

“In the current situation, that positive cases arise is something we must assume is possible,” said Toshiro Muto, the CEO of the Tokyo organizing committee.

The person is identified simply as a “games-concerned personnel.” The person is also listed as a non-resident of Japan. Tokyo officials said the person was placed in a 14-day quarantine.

The Olympic Village on Tokyo Bay will house about 11,000 athletes during the Olympics and thousands of other staff.

IOC President Thomas Bach said this week there was “zero” risk of athletes in the village passing on the virus to Japanese or other resident of the village.

Organizers say since July 1 and as of Saturday, 44 people under their “jurisdiction” have tested positive. None involved people living in the village and most are identified as “contractors” for Tokyo 2020 and “games-concerned personnel." The list includes one athlete — who tested positive on July 14 — and three members of the media.

Of the 44, only 12 are listed as “non-resident of Japan.”

Organizers say that athletes and staff who have been away from Tokyo at training camps are excluded from this list and their accounting.

Tokyo officials said they could not give an estimate of the number of people in the village as of Saturday.

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45 Comments
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IOC President Thomas Bach said this week there was “zero” risk of athletes in the village passing on the virus to Japanese or other resident of the village.

I believe! Let's hold the great Olympics in safety. Can't wait for them to start.

-22 ( +8 / -30 )

No count in village, no detail.

Everything's clear.

The tested person got a gold medal by himself, first ever quarantined inside a village where to be paid for doing nothing.

If it is an unpaid volunteering staff, what happens ?

Anyway, covid is caught from means of transport and lack of measures, same as in every country. Japan is rather doing well outside annihilating any fun from the games.

-5 ( +8 / -13 )

At Any Cost!”

*- “Officials said it was not an athlete with the _ the Games opening in just under a week on July 23.” -*

Seiko Hashimoto, TOC, confirmed the positive test Fri….for ‘confidentiality purposes’ they offer a vague, few details. (Something possibly redacted above?)

15 ( +19 / -4 )

Find the title a bit odd. "First" Covid-19 case. You mean you were expecting that and there will be more to come?

But, we've been told ad nauseam that the Village, of all places, would be a safe and secure bubble.

In that case, shouldn't the title be "One Covid-19 case found at the Village"?

15 ( +21 / -6 )

Oh noes what an unexpected twist of events

9 ( +14 / -5 )

Just hand out ivermectin and get on with the games...

-30 ( +4 / -34 )

IOC President Thomas Bach said this week there was “zero” risk of athletes in the village passing on the virus to Japanese or other resident of the village.

So...Herr Bach was not being completely sincere in his risk assessment? it is not like he could have a motive to be less than completely truthful is it?

19 ( +21 / -2 )

Zero minus 1. No big deal. Mr. Bach-san will go give him a hug and sit with him for 14 days.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

There has been a number of cases within the village. Two Japanese workers tested positive a week ago. It was in the Australian news. It didn’t make the Japanese news though. Funny that!

24 ( +27 / -3 )

Just hand out ivermectin and get on with the games...

The unapproved drug? no thank you.

14 ( +20 / -6 )

One of Japan’s main selling points abroad is its reputation as a highly efficient and well-run country.

Now, I have to say that generally I agree with that assessment, as someone who has been here a while.

But we also know what happens when they get thrown a curveball for which there is no “manual”.

This Covid-impacted Olympics is a grade A curveball, and Japan isn’t even trying to hit it.

Once the dust has settled, I fear that Japan’s reputation will have taken a pretty big hit with other countries, and the blame for that will lie at least in part with the country itself. The IOC won’t be blameless, but Japan will take the brunt.

18 ( +23 / -5 )

@Raw Beer

Ivermectin doesn't cure nor protect against COVID. The only "study" that was going in that direction has recently been proven to be mostly a fabrication.

The best protection for oneself is still to get vaccinated, and towards other to wear a mask and observe social distancing.

Back to the article, it is not a surprise that a few cases will be found in the Olympics village. Despite best intents, it is bound to happen. What matters is how it will be handled by all parties (JP gov, IOC, athletes).

15 ( +20 / -5 )

Yes first case reported here but others have already been reported in overseas media. It is remarkable it even got reported here at all, Must have slipped through the Japanese media "cooperation" with the government on which stories to release, or somehow someone in the foreign media got it who don't care about this "cooperation".

Someone's head may roll for this aberration to the Olympic peace and victory for mankind propaganda with the 100% guaranteed safe Olympics.

11 ( +14 / -3 )

So, it begins!

The screw ups and the cover ups.

14 ( +19 / -5 )

The person is identified simply as a “games-concerned personnel.” The person is also listed as a non-resident of Japan. Tokyo officials said the person was placed in a 14-day quarantine.

Toshiro Muto:

“Maybe you had contact with this person but we can’t tell you because of ‘confidentiality’”

Sleep well!

10 ( +13 / -3 )

Tokyo officials said they could not give an estimate of the number of people in the village as of Saturday.

So they don't have any idea how many people are in the village yet we are led to believe it's one of the most secure monitored places on earth.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

This is not the first case. There have been two previous Covid19 cases in the village.

https://thebridge.in/tokyo-2020/12-staff-2-village-workers-test-positive-covid-22762

13 ( +16 / -3 )

Let's not panic! Get used to it! Feel the summer breeze. Have a nice weekend everyone!

-8 ( +7 / -15 )

This same JOC ‘mouthpiece’ also promised a follow-up, w/details we never got:

Japan Olympic official dies after jumping in front of train” - Jun 7, 2021 - (The requested article has expired, and is no longer avail.)

Organizers say for confidentiality purposes they can only offer a vague description and few details, at this time. -

Agreed @Numan 4:55pm

“So, it begins! The screw ups and the cover ups.” -

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Great time to proceed with the cancellation.

16 ( +20 / -4 )

Just for the (not) fun of it, I thought I'd share here the offical reply I just got from the EU on my question regarding their support to "safe and secure" Games.

My question: "Good morning, I have a question for Mr Michel and Ms von der Leyen. How is it possible that the EU makes the following statement: “We support the holding of the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 in a safe and secure manner this summer as a symbol of global unity in defeating COVID-19”, two days after a publication by top scientist of an article showing that the IOC Playbook for the Games is absolutely insufficient to guarantee "safe and secure" Games? Not to mention the numerous Japanese scientists and doctors\' associations that previously said the same thing. What led the EU to sign such a statement? Looking forward to your reply,"

EU reply (one month later) : "We kindly draw your attention to the fact that the organisers have in the meanwhile taken additional decisions regarding the safe and secure holding of the Olympic Games." 

12 ( +15 / -3 )

There's a link to a Tokyo 2020 doc here if anyone's interested:

https://gtimg.tokyo2020.org/image/upload/production/u3nhnneqjdkgkbtylxkf.pdf

7 ( +9 / -2 )

IOC President Thomas Bach said this week there was “zero” risk.

> > 1st case of COVID-19 detected in Tokyo Olympic Village

so the games haven’t even started, but the lies have.

and this definitely WON’T be the last, will it Bachi Baby?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

@Alfie - thank you for sharing that. That is 13 cases related to the games and more than half (7) are non residents.....it is fairly equally distributed between residents and non residents.

I wonder what kind of contact tracing the IOC or JOC or government is really doing for these folks.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

so the Covid testing worked?

2 ( +6 / -4 )

pretends to be shocked It was only a matter of time

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Kudos, Alfie Noakes, that is a concern putting if mildly.

One of the downsides of this pandemic is Government and health authorities are constantly one step behind.

That is not a criticism, the variants spread throughout the community without fear or favor.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Do the hustleToday  04:45 pm JST

There has been a number of cases within the village. Two Japanese workers tested positive a week ago. It was in the Australian news. It didn’t make the Japanese news though. Funny that!

Do you mean this case reported in Japan Today (this very news website)? Or is there another one?

https://japantoday.com/category/tokyo-2020-olympics/virus-cluster-at-japan-hotel-hosting-brazilian-olympians

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

I wonder what kind of contact tracing the IOC or JOC or government is really doing for these folks.

Probably “honor system contact tracing”:

IOC/JOC person, trying to look stern: “Where did you go yesterday?”

Athlete / related individual: “Nowhere!”

IOC/JOC person: “Very good. Carry on!”

3 ( +5 / -2 )

The system is working like Mr. Bach said. The person that is infected is found and then isolated. As was said there is 0 risk to the public from olympic or village as this person is now removed. The games will surely be safe and fun for watching. I’m excited for the opening ceremony and celebration which is coming soon

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

Let the games begin…

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Organizers say for confidentiality purposes they can only offer a vague description and few details.

BS of the highest degree...how will they alert all the potential contacts that had interaction with this person if they don't release any details. Disgusting.

*There has been a number of cases within the village. Two Japanese workers tested positive a week ago. It was in the Australian news. *It didn’t make the Japanese news though. Funny that!

Do you mean this case reported in Japan Today (this very news website)? Or is there another one?

https://japantoday.com/category/tokyo-2020-olympics/virus-cluster-at-japan-hotel-hosting-brazilian-olympians

That's a different case.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

I just want to know, what we will blame for Covid once the Olympics are over?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Based on so far “alcohol” and “loud talking”?

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

IOC President Thomas Bach said this week there was “zero” risk of athletes in the village passing on the virus to Japanese or other resident of the village

Bach is a scientist now?

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Today (I believe) a member of the Ugandan team left a note saying he “wanted to work in Japan” and did a runner his hotel. They can’t find him. Wonderful security indeed.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

The infection rate for Olympics affiliated people is already higher than the infection rate for Tokyo residents.

yes nice “zero” risk there, IOC.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Good to see the testing is working and cases are being located. It’s all under control and will remain so. Let’s enjoy the games and the summer without friends and family.

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

BlacklabelToday  08:11 pm JST

The infection rate for Olympics affiliated people is already higher than the infection rate for Tokyo residents.

yes nice “zero” risk there, IOC.

How could you possibly know that? They test everyone in the Olympic village daily.

In Tokyo, it's very, very rare to get tested.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The problem with trying to use the covid pandemic as a tool to get the Olympics stopped is that it just does not add up.

It's fine if you don't like the Olympics, and you can argue about the cost, disruption or that you find it boring.

But blatant and dare I say weak attempts at twisting the covid numbers actually weaken the anti Olympic argument because it's all based on "what if?". Choosing a point and then twisting the facts to suit it never works.

As I've said before, as long as you are happy with millions of unvaccinated and untested people cramming onto trains every day, then you can't argue that 5,000 people sat in an 80,000 stadium outside as a reason to panic.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

I hate to say ""I told you so"" But ""I TOLD YOU SO""

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I can’t wait for the games to be over. What is irritating is the sheer undisciplined complaining guests are doing when they should understand that there really is a pandemic and be courteous and respectful to the host who are very vulnerable to the virus. It’s enough they arrived without getting vaccinated and some coming down now with Coronavirus.

Prevent the spread of the virus and be understanding and compassionate to the host’s requests! They came for the games not to tour! It is a business trip!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Both the organizers and politicians are cowards afraid to face the truth and plan accordingly; on top of that the Japanese people are basically timid and are unwilling to challenge authority. So be it, the country, politicians, and organizers are in for a clear awakening for disregard for commonsense.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

All of this is terrible. 1st: This info is correct. 2nd: Placement of the biggest story in the country concerning Japan ( should be up front ). 3rd:The wording of the article. Seem the IOC have control over the Media but have no control over COVID at this games. Watch The next media release will be the IOC passing the buck onto the Japanese. Here a great cost saving idea. As the competitor became infected and move out of the village into isolation, those IOC delegates staying in way better hotel protection should move into the vacant Olympic village accommodation!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

...just imagine all the cases they would find, if they tested the regular office workers in Japan at the same efficiency and rate they test everyone at the Athlete's Village.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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