16 May 2020
Lausanne: International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach on Saturday urged governments to include sport in their plans for once restrictions that are in place to fight with the coronavirus pandemic are lifted.
Bach made the comments after the IOC and the World Health Organisation signed an agreement to work together to "promote health through sport and physical activity."
"Over the last few months in the current crisis, we have all seen how important sport and physical activity are for physical and mental health. Sport can save lives," Bach said after the signing of the agreement with WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
"The IOC calls on the governments of the world to include sport in their post-crisis support programmes because of the important role of sport in the prevention of NCDs, but also of communicable diseases."
Bach also called for patience going into the Tokyo Olympics that has been postponed to July 23 next year.
"We're one year and two months away from these Games, and then we will take all the necessary decisions at the right time relying on the advise of the World Health Organization, discussing it on our joint task force," he said.
"But I think nobody can at this moment in time really give you a reliable answer on how the world will look like in July 2021. So we have to be vigilant and we have to be patient at the same time to take the right measures to ensure the safe participation of everybody in the Games."