BREAKING: Canada Refusing To Participate In 2020 Olympic Games Due To Coronavirus

(Photo credit should read GEOFF ROBINS/AFP via Getty Images)

The Canadian Olympic Committee made a huge decision on Sunday when they became the first national Olympic committee to state that they won’t participate in an Olympic Games that begins in July.

“The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) and Canadian Paralympic Commitee (CPC), backed by their Athletes’ Commissions, National Sports Organizations, and the Government of Canada, have made the difficult decision to not send Canadian teams to the Olympic and Paralympic Games in the summer of 2019,” the statement sent to athletes late on Sunday reads.

“The COC and CPC urgently call on the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and World Health Organization (WHO) to postpone the Games for one year and we offer them our full support in helping navigate all the complexities that rescheduling the Games iwll bring. While we recognize the inherent complexities around a postponement, nothing is more important than the health and safety of our athletes and the world community.”

The International Olympic Committee set a four-week deadline to determine the fate of the Tokyo Games, but Canadian athletes had mixed feelings about showing up.

Cancelling the Games entirely, IOC president Thomas Bach said, is not being considered. That might be changing if other countries follow Canada’s lead.

Canada currently has more than 1,300 confirmed cases of coronavirus, with 14 confirmed deaths.