Olympic inspectors give initial approval of 2020 Tokyo Games

Concluding a three-day visit to Japan, Olympic inspectors expressed satisfaction Friday with early preparations for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games.

The four-man contingent visited a number of existing and potential venues and held discussions with the host country's organizing committee.

"Tokyo 2020 has successfully undertaken a number of important steps on its seven-year Olympic journey," said John Coates, chairman of the coordination commission for the International Olympic Committee. "We have been very impressed with what we have seen this week during our visit."

Since being awarded the Games last fall, Japanese officials have encountered considerable skepticism. Critics have raised concerns about lingering effects from the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster that followed a 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

There have also been complaints about a lack of diversity within the organizing committee. A number of women were subsequently added to the panel.

"Along with spending a lot of time covering the finer details of our preparations, it was a very welcome opportunity for the IOC team to get to know the members of our 'All Japan' team who have been carefully selected to ensure representation from a broad cross-spectrum of Japanese society," said Yoshiro Mori, the former prime minister who is overseeing the buildup to the Games.


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