Abe makes final push for 2020 Olympics


Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reportedly talked up Tokyo’s bid to host the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics during meetings with leaders of Argentina and Brazil.

Abe met separately with Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff ahead of the G20 summit in St. Petersburg, Russia.

The premier told Fernandez he hopes that Tokyo will win the bid and said he plans to visit Argentina in time for the general assembly of the International Olympic Committee when a host city for the 2020 Summer Games will be decided upon.

Fernandez wished Japan success and hailed its long-term ties with Argentina.

In a meeting with the Brazilian president, Abe also expressed his hope that the 2020 Games will be held in Tokyo. Although one survey of oddsmakers have put Tokyo as slight favorite in the decision, others see Madrid as the favorite, given the continued problems related to Fukushima and continued tensions in the Middle East.

Abe made what others see as a plea – rare for Japan – as the country scrambled to mop up the precarious Fukushima nuclear plant after Tepco revealed that tons of irradiated water may have possibly leaked into the sea.

“The world is watching to see if we can carry out the decommissioning of the Fukushima nuclear power plant, including addressing the contaminated water issues,” Abe told cabinet ministers.

The central government earmaked nearly $500 million for the constrution of a underground ice wall to contain highly-contaminated water from spilling into the surroundings.

By: Maesie Bertumen

Image: lewishamdreamer/Flickr



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