2020 Olympics opening ceremony takes place in Tokyo
Friday, July 23, 2021
The 2020 Summer Olympics opening ceremony took place today in Tokyo's National Stadium in Japan. Japanese tennis player , 23, lit the Olympic flame. Out of a seating capacity of 68,000, only the media and 900 dignitaries were able to watch in person. Originally due to take place in 2020, the games were postponed by a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Japanese flag was carried in by athletes and healthcare workers. A moment of silence was then held to remember the victims of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, as well as Olympic athletes who had died, including the Israeli athletes who were . The Olympic cauldron was represented as the sun on top of Japan's , which then opened like a flower, symbolising "vitality and hope". The sky above the stadium was then lit by a revolving globe composed of 1,824 drones; this was followed by a performance of John Lennon and Yoko Ono's by singers and .
International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach said, "Today is a moment of hope. Yes, it is very different from what all of us had imagined. But let us cherish this moment because finally we are all here together." Tokyo 2020 president said, "Here is a vision for the future, one that embodies 'unity in diversity', one of peace and respect for one another" .
There were protests outside the stadium against the Olympics taking place due to the ongoing pandemic. A recent poll byamong the Japanese found 32.1% believed the Olympics should be cancelled, and 87% were concerned about it being hosted due to the pandemic.
- Katie Falkingham. "Tokyo Olympics: 2020 Games begin as Naomi Osaka lights Olympic flame in poignant ceremony" — , July 23, 2021
- Emma Thurston. "Tokyo 2020 Olympics: Naomi Osaka lights Olympic cauldron at Opening Ceremony" — , July 23, 2021
- Tom Schad. "Protesters among hundreds to gather at Olympic Stadium during opening ceremony" — , July 23, 2021