Yoshirō Mori

Tokyo 2020 Olympics chief Yoshiro Mori resigned
Yoshiro Mori
Yoshiro Mori Credit: World Economic Forum (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

After his apology for sexist remarks failed to quell domestic and overseas outrage, Yoshiro Mori resigned his position as the president of the Tokyo Olympics Organising Committee.

Last week, Mori sparked international outrage by saying, "Board meetings with women take too long because they talk too much." The 83-year-old former prime minister of Japan later apologized, but by then, the damage had been done.

Tokyo 2020: IOC says Yoshiro Mori's remarks about women are 'absolutely inappropriate'
Yoshiro Mori
Yoshiro Mori Credit: World Economic Forum (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

Yoshiro Mori, the head of the Tokyo Olympics organising committee, said last Wednesday that women talk too much and that meetings with many female board directors would "take a lot of time". Around 440 Games volunteers have quit in response to Mori's comments.

On Tuesday, the IOC added the remarks were "in contradiction" to its "commitments and the reforms of its Olympic Agenda 2020" - though it did not mention any further action against Mr Mori.

"Besides Mr Mori's apology, the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee also considers his comment to be inappropriate and has reaffirmed its commitment to gender equality," the IOC said.

Tokyo Olympics next year could be cancelled without a coronavirus vaccine

It will be difficult for Tokyo to host the Olympic Games next year unless there is an effective vaccine against the new coronavirus that causes COVID-19, Yoshitake Yokokura, the head of the Japan Medical Association (JMA) said Tuesday.

Japan and the International Olympic Committee agreed to postpone the Tokyo Games until July 23, 2021, because of the coronavirus pandemic. Japan is under a month-long state of emergency amid a rapid increase of infections across the country.

The president of the Tokyo 2020 organizing committee Yoshiro Mori states there would be no more delays: “No, in that situation, it will be canceled,” he said. “In the past, when there were such problems, like wartime, it has been canceled. This time, we are fighting an invisible enemy.”.