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The faces of Olympic victory, now without masks as IOC relaxes rules

On Sunday, the International Olympic Committee relaxed its health rules and said medalists can remove their masks on the podium for photos — for 30 seconds.

Published: 26th July 2021 11:51 AM  |   Last Updated: 26th July 2021 11:51 AM   |  A+A-

Supporters use fans to beat the heat at the men's cross country mountain biking at the 2020 Summer Olympics. (Photo | AP)

By Associated Press

TOKYO: The faces of victory will be a bit more visible for the rest of the Tokyo Olympics.

On Sunday, the International Olympic Committee relaxed its health rules and said medalists can remove their masks on the podium for photos — for 30 seconds.

This, says the IOC, acknowledges “a unique moment in their sporting career.”

Health protocols agreed to ahead of the Tokyo Olympics to control COVID-19 infections had required all medalists to keep masks on for the whole ceremony.

But it's not all freedom and exposed mouths from here on out. Athletes have to stay on their own podium step. And group photos on the top step? Masks back on, please.

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