Tokyo residents torn two months before Olympics

There's just two months to go before the Olympic Games are due to kick off in Japan.

Soon the world's athletes will be descending on Tokyo, but residents there remain divided about whether they should be welcomed.

"As a Tokyo local, I feel conflicted. If we hold the Olympics, there is no doubt, variants will enter Japan."

Keiko Yamamura is a yoga teacher.

She's just one of the many people Reuters asked about the Games, from doctors to sushi chefs.

Many were conflicted over whether the gamble of hosting this summer is still worth it.

The Olympics have already been delayed for a year due to the pandemic.

But Japan has seen a resurgence of COVID cases and is under its third state of emergency.

Doctor Kazuhiro Miura fears that his clinic will be overstretched if the event goes ahead.

He also raises concern about Japan's low vaccination rate, among the slowest of any major developed nation.

"The biggest issue is manpower. We need to send all of our medical resources and manpower to various places. We need people to be inoculated with vaccines and work at the Olympics but in order to do that, we can't stop regular medical examinations at local clinics like mine. If we do, the medical system will collapse, so we need to protect the hospitals."

Others are more concerned about the consequence of not holding the Games.

Restaurant owner Takashi Yonehana thinks it would affect Japan's international standing.

The last time the country hosted the event was in 1964 when the country was booming.

"I don't want it to be cancelled, I want it to go ahead because we will be seen as a country that has cancelled the Olympics around the world, I think in the next 100 years. When I think about that, I think it's better to hold it than regret not doing it."

The government has vowed to hold what it calls a 'safe and secure' Olympics.

Still - recent opinion polls show a majority of Japanese residents either want the Games cancelled or postponed.

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