PARIS, March 22 (Xinhua) -- World Athletics released a statement on Sunday expressing its support of the possible postponement of the 2020 Olympic Games amid the worldwide COVID-19 outbreak.
"World Athletics welcomes discussions with the IOC to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and wrote to the IOC earlier today to relay this feedback from its area presidents, Council and athletes," said athletics' global governing body. "We stand ready to work with the IOC and all sport on an alternative date."
The executive board of the International Olympic Committee announced on Sunday that the organization would step up its scenario-planning for Tokyo 2020, adding that it would give itself a four week deadline to make a decision on whether the Games should be postponed.
"The IOC will, in full coordination and partnership with the Tokyo 2020 organizing committee, the Japanese authorities and the Tokyo metropolitan government, start detailed discussions to complete its assessment of the rapid development of the worldwide health situation and its impact on the Olympic Games, including the scenario of postponement. The IOC is confident that it will have finalized these discussions within the next four weeks," the IOC said in a statement.
The 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games are scheduled to take place from July 24 to August 9.