Japan to investigate Olympic payment claim

Japan to investigate Olympic payment claim

TOKYO – Japan on Friday said it would question officials involved in Tokyo’s successful 2020 Olympics bid after French prosecutors launched a probe into an alleged illicit payment linked to the campaign.

The International Olympic Committee chose Tokyo over Istanbul and Madrid as host for the 2020 Games

“We will further work to confirm facts,” top Japanese government spokesman Yoshihide Suga told a regular press conference, citing the French investigation.

Olympic Minister Toshiaki Endo also told journalists that the government’s Sports Agency will speak to officials from the Tokyo metropolitan government and the Japanese Olympic Committee.

However, Suga and Endo both said they were confident that no wrongdoing occurred, based on previous declarations by officials.

French investigators on Thursday said they suspect that $2 million paid to a son of disgraced former world athletics supremo Lamine Diack was intended to win support for Tokyo’s 2020 Olympics bid.

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