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2020 Olympic torch relay to be about 130 days long: organizing committee chief

Yoshiro Mori, president of the Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, left, and Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike are pictured together in Tokyo's Minato Ward on Dec. 26, 2017. (Pool photo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Yoshiro Mori, the president of the Tokyo Olympic organizing committee, said Tuesday that the 2020 torch relay will require about 130 days.

    Speaking after a meeting with Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike, Mori said it would require that much time to wind through Japan's 47 prefectures. The International Olympic Committee has asked that the torch relay be completed within 100 days.

    "At this juncture we're concerned with how to take it through the entire Tokyo metropolitan region, from the islands to the Tama district," Mori said. "I asked for a thorough examination."

    The Tokyo organizing committee has set March as a deadline for a decision on the relay's start point and the number of days needed.

    As for how those days will be allocated, one draft plan calls for emphasis to be placed in the areas affected by natural disasters and those areas outside of Tokyo hosting Olympic events. Those prefectures would be given three days each. Other areas outside of Tokyo would get two days each.

    Organizers hope to announce the route of the torch relay in the summer of 2019. The lighting of an Olympic torch has been a feature of the modern Olympics since the 1928 Amsterdam games, while the relay was created by Nazi Germany for the 1936 Berlin games.

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