UN General Assembly approves change of Olympic Truce observation period

A man wearing protective face mask, following the outbreak of the coronavirus, is seen through The Olympic rings in front of the Japan Olympics Museum in Tokyo, Japan, March 4, 2020. REUTERS/Stoyan Nenov

NEW YORK, 08 JULY 2020 (INSIDE THE GAMES)—The United Nations General Assembly(UNGA) has approved a change to the Olympic Truce observation period to reflect the postponement of Tokyo 2020.

Entitled “Building a peaceful and better world through sport and the Olympic spirit,” the resolution was first adopted in December 2019 and followed the original dates of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

It has now been re-adopted for the corresponding period next year, with the Olympic Truce set to be observed from July 16, 2021 to September 12, 2021.

This is seven days before the re-arranged Olympics commence, and seven days after the Paralympics conclude.

Tokyo 2020 was delayed by one year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“We welcome the United Nations General Assembly’s approval of the change in the observation period of the Olympic Truce to next summer, in accordance with the new scheduled dates for the Tokyo 2020 Games,” said Tokyo 2020 President Yoshirō Mori.

“As the worldwide spread of COVID-19 brings further difficulties to regions already struggling with conflict, we continue to place hope in the power of sport to bring people around the world together and help achieve peace.

“Inspired by the adoption of this updated resolution, we will make all the more effort to utilise the priceless opportunity presented by the Tokyo 2020 Games to help build a peaceful and better world through sports.”

In keeping with the tradition dating back to the original Olympic Games in Ancient Olympia in 776 BC, the Olympic Truce aims to ensure a halt to all hostilities, allowing the safe passage and participation of athletes and spectators for Tokyo 2020.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) revived the Olympic Truce in 1992, and it is now introduced for each edition of the Games.

“With their support, the Governments of the world are emphasising once more the unifying power of the Olympic Games,” IOC President Thomas Bach said.

“The Games are a celebration of the unity of humankind in all our diversity.

“Athletes from all 206 National Olympic Committees and the IOC Refugee Olympic Team all enjoy the same rights, respecting each other and with the same rules applying to everyone without any kind of discrimination.

“This decision is also a strong sign of confidence that these Olympic Games will be the light at the end of the dark tunnel humankind is currently going through.

“We are very grateful to all the Governments for this expression of trust in the Olympic Games.”

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