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Olympic Flame returns to public display next week

Olympic Flame

TOKYO, JAPAN - JULY 23: The lantern containing the Olympic flame is displayed during the event marking one year to go to the Tokyo Olympic Games on July 23, 2020 in Tokyo, Japan. The 2020 Summer Olympic Games have been postponed to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic with the opening ceremony now scheduled for July 23 next year. (Photo by Du Xiaoyi - Pool/Getty Images)

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The Olympic Flame, which was taken off regular public display in early April, will return to view at the Japanese Olympic Museum on Sept. 1, according to the facility.

Four months ago, the flame was taken off public display in Fukushima after a state of emergency was declared for Tokyo and surrounding areas due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The flame arrived in Japan from Greece on March 20 and was on public display in Fukushima for about two weeks after it was announced that the Tokyo Games were postponed until 2021 (and the torch relay suspended, too).

The Japanese leg of the Olympic torch relay was to begin on March 26 in Fukushima, where the first competition of the Tokyo Games -- softball -- is scheduled two days before the Opening Ceremony.

In 2011 in Fukushima, more than 18,000 people died or went missing after an earthquake and tsunami.

Organizers have not announced when the Olympic torch relay will resume, but the flame will be in the museum for two months. The flame made an appearance at a one-year-out ceremony on July 23, held by Rikako Ikee, a top Japanese swimmer returning from leukemia.

“The Olympic Flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in announcing the Olympic postponement in March.

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