Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe accepted the Tokyo Olympics may have to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced on Sunday it was considering postponing the Games, with a decision to be made in the next four weeks.
Abe, who said earlier this month the Olympics – scheduled to start in July – would go ahead, accepted the Games may have to be postponed.
"I want to implement the Olympics and Paralympics completely as proof that the world has overcome the virus, which the international community is now severely affected by," he told parliament on Monday, via NHK World.
"If it is difficult to do so, we will have to think first about athletes and make a decision about whether to postpone the event."
There have been more than 337,000 cases of coronavirus worldwide, with the death toll climbing above 14,600.