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AP Sports Writer
TOKYO (AP) — All fans will be barred from the Paralympics in Japan because of the coronavirus pandemic, just as they were from the recently- completed Tokyo Olympics, organizers said Monday.
There were a few exceptions made during the Olympics with some fans allowed in outlying areas away from Tokyo. This time, all fans will be barred except the possibility of some children attending a few unspecified events.
Organizers have also asked the public not to come out to view road events.
The decision was announced after a meeting with International Paralympic Committee president Andrew Parsons, organizing committee president Seiko Hashimoto, Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike and Olympic Minister Tamayo Marukawa.
The Paralympics open on Aug. 24 with about 4,400 athletes, a far smaller event than the Olympics with 11,000 athletes. But the Paralympics come as new infections have accel- erated in Tokyo, which may expose an athlete pop- ulation that is more vulnerable to COVID-19.
New infections in Tokyo tripled during the 17 days of the Olympics, although medical experts said the surge was not directly linked the Tokyo Games. Rather, experts suggested an indirect effect as the public was distracted and lulled into a false sense of security that staging the Games offered.
The Paralympics end on Sept. 5.