Sports

WATCH: Tokyo Olympics opening show to kick off Games hit by protests

14:33, 23 July 2021
WATCH: Tokyo Olympics opening show to kick off Games hit by protests Photo: Stanislav Kogiku/Global Look Press

The Tokyo Summer Olympics opens on Friday with a ceremony like no other in the serge of coronavirus pandemic, recent scandals, and mass protests against the Games hit Tokyo.


A year delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will have no spectators amid the decision no one would attend The Japan National Stadium hosting the opening ceremony. However, 950 VIPs will be present at the event: 800 foreign guests and 150 Japanese. Japan's Emperor Naruhito declares the Olympics open.

Organizers planned to present orchestra performances, choreographed dancing, and drone demonstrations.

The traditional lighting ceremony was held at Olympia, Greece, and it took two days to deliver the flame at the Japan National Stadium.

On Friday the protest rally took place near the Tokyo City Hall, where the final leg of the Olympic torch relay occurred. Japanese opposed to holding the world sporting event at all.

Days before the start of the Games opening ceremony director Kentaro Kobayashi was sacked because of cracking a joke about Holocaust in the 1990s. On Monday composer Keigo Oyamada, also known as Cornelius, resigned after it had been discovered that he had bullied his classmates in schools, including those with disabilities. Earlier, creative chief Hiroshi Sasaki quit after saying that plus-size comedian Naomi Watanabe could appear as an "Olympig". The Tokyo Organizing Committee confirmed 79 coronavirus cases at the Games among athletes who arrived in Japan. And not for the last, this week Asian black bear twice broke into the Azuma Baseball Stadium, making Fukushima police and the entire contingent of Olympic guards feverishly searching for the ursine intruder.

Around 19,000 athletes will participate in the competitions, which will include 33 disciplines.