Tokyo 2020 President Yoshiro Mori congratulates WKF for 50th Anniversary

The President of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Organising Committee Yoshiro Mori congratulated the WKF for the 50th anniversary of the foundation of the organisation. "The flame of Karate will not go out and will continue to burn in our hearts until the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games next summer," said Mr Mori in a message to the WKF.

Karate is set to make its Olympic debut at the Tokyo 2020 Games next year. While the anticipated first Olympic appearance of the sport occurs, the World Karate Federation is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the creation of the organisation.

"Since August 2016 and the 129th IOC Session in Rio where Karate was approved as one of the additional events in the package for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, our excitement remains unabated," added Mr Mori. "I am also honoured and privileged that we will host the first Olympic Karate tournament during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Nippon Budokan, 50 years after the first World Karate Championships was held in 1970."

In his letter to the WKF, the head of the Tokyo 2020 organising committee praised the strong roots of Karate with the Japanese culture, and called the Olympic debut of the sport a "historic moment".

"Japan is the birthplace of Karate, and its joining of the Olympic Games in Tokyo, along with the spread of global excellence, with strong ties to Japan and Japanese culture, will ensure a positive legacy for Japan, the Olympic Games and Karate," said Mr Mori.

The former Prime Minister of Japan also stated the necessity of hosting the Games next year following the postponement of the event due to the coronavirus outbreak.

"I remain fully confident that the passion, hard work and dedication that everyone has put into preparing for the first Olympic Karate tournament, including all Karate athletes' training and their efforts for what they have achieved so far towards participating to the Games, will overcome this difficulty," added Mr Mori.

"I would like to reiterate that staging the Games next year is more than ever "a must" for humanity. Its success will represent a beacon of hope for all the world, and show that through unity and solidarity we can overcome any challenge".

The Karate competition at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is scheduled to be held from August 5 to 7, 2021 in Nippon Budokan arena.

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