'Absurd' to stage Olympics: health professor

Michael Baker, who specializes in epidemiology and has worked on the COVID-19 Technical Advisory Group during the pandemic for the Ministry of Health, described the fact the Olympics is still going ahead as 'absurd', adding there was no 'reason or justification' for them to go ahead.

The Japanese capital of Tokyo will play host to the games in July and August, but the Japanese government and the International Olympic Committee are facing calls to postpone or cancel the event for a second time because of rising coronavirus cases both in Japan and other parts of the world.

Baker said that the huge amount of international travel and mass gatherings, which are key features of the Olympics 'entirely incompatible with the pandemic.'

"If you want to give the variants a wonderful opportunity to spread globally and infect and kill a lot more people, the best single thing you can do is move people across the globe, across borders from all around the world, and put them in one spot for a while so they can share their viruses. And then send them home again. That's a disaster."

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