National / Politics

Japan's basic 2020 Olympics plan includes target of more than 16 gold medals and increased safety measures

Kyodo

Japan plans to ramp up security and counterterrorism measures in time for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics in the wake of the Nov. 13 Paris terrorist attacks, the government said Friday in a basic plan for the games that also included medal goals.

“We will take all possible counterterrorism and cybersecurity measures to ensure the safety of athletes, audiences and civilians,” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told ministers during a meeting.

To prevent terror attacks, the government will improve screening measures for immigration and increase measures for intelligence gathering, as well as beef up security at sports stadiums that will host the games. The government also plans to set up a task force to tackle cyberattacks.

The plan also said Japan will aim for its best medals tally by winning more than 16 golds at the event.

“Medals will encourage athletes. It will be better to have a goal, so that the state can support (those who would be able to) offer hopes and dreams to children,” said Olympics minister Toshiaki Endo.

Tokyo hopes to welcome a record number of participating countries and regions at the Paralympics, according to the plan, which also states that games organizers will help athletes “give their best performance.”

The government considers the sports events an opportunity to show the world progress made in rebuilding devastated areas following the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami.

There are plans to hold part of the torch relay and establish training camps in the region.