From The Post’s Amy Shipley:

The International Skating Union will hold this year’s world figure skating championships in Moscow beginning April 24, more than a month later than originally scheduled, officials announced Thursday.

The championships, set to begin this week in Tokyo, were postponed in the wake of Japan’s catastrophic earthquake and tsunami. The decision to move the event averts the first cancellation in 50 years.

“The ISU reiterates that in the light of the dramatic situation in Japan the staging of sporting events becomes relatively secondary and a solution satisfying all involved is extremely difficult,” ISU President Ottavio Cinquanta and Director General Fredi Schmid said in a joint statement. “Nevertheless, it is in the best interest of the ISU and its Members to hold the Championships as soon as possible.

ISU officials said they considered proposals to relocate the event to Lake Placid, N.Y.; Colorado Springs, Colo.; Graz, Austria; Zagreb, Croatia; Turku, Finland; and Vancouver. Russia was able to offer the ISU assurances of easy access to visas and entry – which might have been a problem on short notice in the United States – the statement said.

Three male and two female singles skaters, three dance teams and two pairs teams from the United States qualified for the event with top finishes at the recent U.S. championships. The world figure skating championships were last canceled 1961, when the entire U.S. figure skating team and a number of coaches and officials were killed in a plane crash.