ATHENS, March 13 (Reuters) - The Hellenic Olympic Committee (HOC) decided to suspend the remainder of the Olympic Torch relay through the country to avoid attracting crowds because of coronavirus, it said on Friday.
The Tokyo 2020 Olympics torch relay got under way on Thursday when the flame was lit by the rays of the sun in ancient Olympia in a scaled-down ceremony overshadowed by the coronavirus pandemic.
But HOC said the opening leg of the relay in the southern Peloponnese town of Sparta attracted unexpectedly high crowds, forcing it to suspend the remaining stops. The handover of the flame to the Tokyo Games organisers would take place as scheduled in Athens on March 19 without spectators.
Reporting by Renee Maltezou