THE ORGANISERS of the International journalism festival have announced the cancellation of the 2020 edition amidst fears of the deadly virus, COVID-19.
Announcing the cancellation, founders of the festival, Arianna Ciccone and Christopher Potter through a statement said the festival earlier scheduled to hold on 1st to 5th April 2020 has been canceled owing to the risk of public health safety.
The 2020 edition was set to hold in Perugia, Italy where more than 1,000 coronavirus cases and 29 deaths have been confirmed.
The statement read that the cancellation is coming a month to the scheduled date because the safety of festival speakers, attendees, volunteers, staff, suppliers as well as that of the citizens of Perugia is a priority.
“We make this announcement today, one month before the start of the festival because we are convinced that the entire festival community will benefit from an end to the uncertainty. Please note that the festival is being canceled, not postponed,” the founders noted.
Ciccione and Potter apologized to all intending speakers, volunteers, and attendees for the inconvenience noting that another edition of the festival will hold in 2021.
“The next festival will take place in Perugia from 14 to 18 April 2021, we hope all those who were intending to participate in the 2020 festival will be able to come to Perugia for the 2021 festival,” said the organisers.
As cases of Coronavirus escalates, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Friday that the spread of the lethal disease is ‘getting bigger’ as there has been more than 85,000 confirmed cases across the globe.