First Lady Jill Biden appeared at the Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony on Friday, wearing a mask as she joined a number of world leaders at a stadium closed to the public because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mrs. Biden, 70, wore a blue mask along with a black and white polka dot dress and long pearl necklace as she represented the United States on her first solo international tour as first lady lady.
The wife of President Biden joined a number of world leaders who traveled to Japan for the opening ceremony in a nearly empty National Stadium.
Others there included French President Emmanuel Macron – the country that will host the 2024 Paris Olympics – as well as Emperor Naruhito of Japan.
Despite the usual fireworks and dazzling choreography, the nearly empty stadium silenced the ceremony – a meet the protesters complained that it could have been a more viral event with so many athletes traveling from all over the world.
Organizers held a moment of silence for those who have died of COVID – with the screams of protesters outside clearly audible as the music paused, the Associated Press noted.
Biden arrived in Tokyo on Thursday, with a busy schedule set for the roughly 48 hours she planned to be in the Japanese capital.
She began with dinner on Thursday night with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga and his wife, Mariko Suga, with whom she attended an incense workshop on Friday before the opening ceremony, People magazine said.
“For Japan, our only real ally is the United States,” Suga said before the meeting. “I am extremely pleased that the first lady is coming to Japan and would like to give her a warm welcome.”
At 11:30 a.m. Tokyo time, she held a virtual meetup with members of Team USA, praising the “years of work, drive, and belief that keep you going” that brought them to with the game.
“Becoming an Olympic athlete is a rare achievement in ordinary times. But you did it during a global pandemic,” she told them on the Zoom call, according to Independent.
Hours later, she met Emperor Naruhito at the Imperial Palace, waving to the waiting press photographers as she arrived in the outfit she would later wear to the opening ceremony.
She was one of 11 guests, along with others including the presidents of Armenia, France, Kosovo and Poland and also Prince Albert of Monaco. Everyone take note.
On Saturday, the first lady will host a US-Mexico softball party at the US Embassy for staff members and their families, cheering on other athletes in a number of other events. before leaving Tokyo.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the Bidens felt it was important that the Olympic Games delegation be led “at the highest level.”
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https://nypost.com/2021/07/23/jill-biden-masks-up-with-world-leaders-at-olympics-2021-opening-ceremony/ | Jill Biden masks up with world leaders at Olympics 2021 opening ceremony