International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach is set to visit Hiroshima on July 16 as part of efforts to promote peace ahead of the contentious staging of the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
Citing "sources close to the matter", Kyodo News reports that Bach is planning to go to the site which was devastated by an atomic bomb in the final year of the Second World War.
It also reported that there are plans for IOC vice-president John Coates to make a trip to Nagasaki - another city hit by the nuclear weapon - on the same day Bach arrives in Hiroshima.
The visits to the two cities are expected to mark the start of the Olympic Truce - adopted by the United Nations - which is set to be observed from July 16 to September 12.
The resolution aims to ensure a halt to all hostilities, allowing the safe passage and participation of athletes and spectators for the Olympic and Paralympic Games in the Japanese capital.
About 140,000 people died in Hiroshima after an atomic bomb was dropped on the city by the United States Air Forces on August 6 in 1945.
Three days later, Nagasaki was bombed by the Americans resulting in around 40,000 deaths before Japan surrendered, bringing the war to an end on August 15.
Bach had previously planned to visit Hiroshima in May to coincide with the Torch Relay’s passage through the prefecture before the trip was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The German lawyer and Olympic fencing gold medallist is now reportedly due to arrive in Japan on July 9 - three days earlier than planned - before visiting Hiroshima a week later.
Coates has already landed in the host nation ahead of the Olympics which are due to open in less than a month’s time.
According to Kyodo News, the planned visits to Hiroshima and Nagasaki are part of the Olympic Truce with the IOC looking to promote peace at a time when it faces opposition over the hosting of the Games due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Inspired by the Ancient Games, the IOC revived the Olympic Truce in 1992, and it is now introduced for each edition of the Games.
Earlier this month, Japan's opposition leader Yukio Edano called for Bach and other VIPs, such as world leaders, to be banned from attending the Olympics due to COVID-19 concerns.
Edano, the head of the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan, argued that only athletes, referees and support staff should be allowed to attend while warning that Tokyo 2020 could cause an "explosion" of new coronavirus infections.
Medical officials have warned the Games could become a "super-spreader" event.
The IOC and Tokyo 2020 organisers will implement a series of strict rules they claim will ensure the Olympics and Paralympics are safe and secure, including a reduction in the number of accredited officials and banning visits to tourist areas.
More than 80 per cent of people inside the Athletes' Village will be vaccinated or be in the process of inoculation in time for the Games, according to the IOC.
The Olympics are scheduled to take place from July 23 to August 8, followed by the Paralympics from August 24 to September 5.