70% of Japanese want Tokyo Games canceled or postponed: vote

TOKYO (Reuters) – More than 70% of people in Japan want the Tokyo Olympics canceled or postponed as the coronavirus pandemic rolls on, a Kyodo News poll showed Monday, just over 100 days before the planned start of the Games.

The survey showed that 39.2% wanted the Games to be canceled, while 32.8% favored other delays. Only 24.5% of respondents want the world’s largest sporting event to go ahead as scheduled.

Tokyo on Monday began a month-long period of semi-emergency measures to blast a fourth wave of COVID-19 infections driven by a furious mutant strain.

More than 92.6% of respondents felt concern about the resurgence of infections, a Kyodo survey conducted April 10 to 12 showed.

While vaccination shots for people aged 65 and over began at some 120 sites nationwide on Monday, imported doses are still scarce and the speed of vaccination is unlikely to prevent the latest wave of infections.

The survey found that about 60% of people were dissatisfied with Japan’s progress on vaccinations.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s cabinet approval rate rose 1.9 percentage points from a month earlier to 44%, while his disapproval score was at 36.1%, the poll showed.