The Japanese government plans to ban foreign VIPs from meeting their countries' athletes during this summer's Tokyo Olympics as a measure to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, officials said Wednesday.
The Foreign Ministry presented the plan to a panel of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, as the government continues its efforts to host the Olympics and Paralympics amid the pandemic.
The organizing committee of the Tokyo Games has requested such measures due to concern that athletes could contract the virus, the ministry said.
The VIPs will be required to test negative for COVID-19 ahead of and upon arrival in Japan before being allowed in the country.
The ministry also proposed that the number of accompanying officials be limited to 12 for presidents and prime ministers, and at five for ministers.
The visitors will be asked to keep their stays in Japan as short as possible and to carefully consider their need to travel outside Tokyo.
They will generally be transported in private vehicles and kept away from the general public in hotels and other areas.
The government has told participating countries through their diplomatic missions in Tokyo that the 14-day quarantine requirement would be relaxed for the leaders and officials on condition that the above measures are taken.