Tokyo removes Olympic fan-zones, hundreds of flights canceled in Shenzhen

The pandemic has killed more than 3.8 million people worldwide since the end of December 2019, according to a report established by Agence France-Presse from official sources on the evening of Friday, June 18.

After the United States (600,934 deaths), the countries with the highest number of deaths are Brazil (496,004), India (383,490), Mexico (230,792) and Peru (189,757) . These figures, which are based on daily reports from national health authorities, are generally underestimated. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that the toll of the pandemic could be two to three times higher than that officially recorded.

  • Olympic Games: Tokyo removes fan-zones planned to follow competitions

The announcement comes two days before an important meeting with members of the Games Organizing Committee to finalize what will be allowed for local spectators.

The six fan-zones initially planned to follow the Olympic competitions in Tokyo during the Olympic Games (July 23 to August 8) on giant screens are being canceled due to the health crisis, Governor of the Japanese capital Yuriko announced on Saturday. Koike. “We have decided to cancel these events which bring people together”she told reporters after meeting Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga. “To compensate, we will use the Internet even more to create the atmosphere of the Games and disseminate a lot of cultural information”, continued Mme Koike. Japan has already banned foreign audiences from entering its territory for the event and has also reduced the number of volunteers and guests.

The announcement comes two days before an important meeting with members of the Games Organizing Committee to finalize what will be allowed for local spectators. Policies and organizers are pushing to allow a few spectators to attend the competitions, but health experts advising the government believe it would be safer to hold the Games behind closed doors.

The Japanese archipelago has been relatively spared from the pandemic, having officially deplored 14,000 deaths linked to Covid-19 since the beginning of 2020. But the health crisis has put pressure on the hospital system and the hosting of the Olympics is fear an upsurge in cases and an aggravated spread of variants, especially as barely 6% of the Japanese population is fully vaccinated for the time being.

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  • Hundreds of flights canceled in Shenzhen after positive case

Shenzhen Airport in southern China on Saturday, June 19, canceled hundreds of flights and tightened checks after a restaurant worker tested positive for the Delta variant of the coronavirus. To enter the airport, it is necessary to present a negative test of less than forty-eight hours, explained the Shenzhen Airport Group in a statement on its official account on the social network WeChat. These restrictions came into effect at 1:00 p.m. local time (7:00 a.m. in Paris).

A 21-year-old waitress at Shenzhen Baoan International Airport was infected with the Delta variant, city health officials said. She was diagnosed positive in a routine test performed on airport workers on Thursday. Shenzhen, a city on the mainland and neighboring Hong Kong, is home to major Asian tech companies like Huawei and Tencent.

China reported thirty new cases of coronavirus on Friday, including six in southern Guangdong province, where Shenzhen is located. Nearly 400 flights were canceled on Friday, according to the VariFlight website. Dozens of flights scheduled for Saturday were also canceled. Passages will be fully refunded, according to airport authorities. Millions of Shenzhen residents have been tested in recent weeks after a small outbreak was detected in the port.

The World with AFP