The director of the opening ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics has been dismissed, the organisers have said following news reports that he had previously made jokes about the Holocaust.
Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto told a briefing on Thursday that Kentaro Kobayashi, who was part of a comedy act in the 1990s, had been dismissed because of comments that made fun of the tragedy.
In a video clip of his 1998 act, Kobayashi was seen joking about a game he called “let’s play massacre the Jews”, prompting laughter in the audience.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center, an international Jewish human rights organisation, earlier released a statement condemning Kobayashi’s past behaviour.
“Any association of this person to the Tokyo Olympics would insult the memory of six million