Following health concerns arising from the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), the 2020 edition of the International Journalism Festival has been cancelled.
The organisers revealed this in a press release made available on their website on Saturday.
The release reads: “We know that this decision will cause inconvenience for many and have negative financial consequences for some but we believe it would be irresponsible to act in any other way given current circumstances.
“The health and safety of festival speakers, attendees, volunteers, staff, suppliers as well as that of the citizens of Perugia is and must remain our top 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 cancelled, not postponed.
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“The scenario has changed significantly over the past two or three days. Until the middle of this week we were cautiously optimistic that the festival would go ahead as planned.
“The rapidly deteriorating public health situation has obliged us to take the decision to cancel.
“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.
“This cancellation rips up all the preparation put in over the past 6 months or so by a wide range of people.”
I-79 Media Consults recalls that the outbreak of the virus has been recorded in many countries including Italy where over 400 cases have been recorded.
At least, 19 deaths have been recorded in the European nation so far.
Other countries so far affected by the outbreak include China, US, UK, Nigeria, North Korea, Iran, South Korea, Australia among others.