Japan says to seek 'short, powerful' state of emergency for Tokyo, elsewhere

The Japanese government is seeking a "short and powerful" state of emergency for Tokyo, Osaka and two other prefectures, a cabinet minister said on Friday, as Japan struggles to contain a resurgent pandemic just three months ahead of the Olympics.

Reuters | Updated: 23-04-2021 05:15 IST | Created: 23-04-2021 05:15 IST
Japan says to seek 'short, powerful' state of emergency for Tokyo, elsewhere

The Japanese government is seeking a "short and powerful" state of emergency for Tokyo, Osaka and two other prefectures, a cabinet minister said on Friday, as Japan struggles to contain a resurgent pandemic just three months ahead of the Olympics. Under a new state of emergency for April 25 to May 11, the government would ask restaurants, bars, and karaoke parlours serving alcohol to close, and big sporting events to be held without spectators, Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said.

"We absolutely have to limit the movement of people, and we have to do it decisively," said Nishimura, speaking at the start of a meeting with a panel of experts to discuss the proposed measures. "We need powerful, short and focused measures," he said, asking people to "remember last spring and stay home."

Department stores and other retailers larger than 1,000 square metres would also be asked to close and companies to make greater allowances for people to work-from-home. The state of emergency, which would also include Kyoto and Hyogo and last through Japan's "Golden Week" holidays, are expected to be formally approved later on Friday. The four prefectures account for nearly a quarter of Japan's population.

Japan has so far avoided an explosive spread of the pandemic that has plagued many countries. There have been a total of about 550,000 cases and 9,761 deaths. But the latest rise in infections has stoked alarm with an explosive surge in the mutant variant and a critical shortage of hospital beds in some regions, while Japan's vaccination drive remains sluggish.

Tokyo reported 861 new cases on Thursday, the most since Jan. 29, which was during the third wave of the pandemic and a previous state of emergency. Osaka prefecture reported 1,167, down slightly from a record. Several other prefectures remain in a "quasi-emergency" state of targeted infection controls, and Nishimura said the duration would also be extended to May 11 for some.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Blockchain in Healthcare: Opportunities and challenges

The use of blockchain in healthcare is a relatively new innovation with many of its uses still being explored and related technologies being developed, improved, and scaled. ...

Debate surrounding vaccine passports and development misses bigger picture

... ...

Blockchain vs IOTA: Looking for a better alternative

... ...

For stability, Iraq needs to crack down on corruption

... ...

Videos

Latest News

Champions League: Chelsea beat Real Madrid to set up summit clash against Manchester City

Chelsea has set up a final showdown against Manchester City in the finals of the Champions League after defeating Real Madrid in the second-leg semi-final on Wednesday local time here at Stamford Bridge. In the second-leg semi-final, Chelse...

Woman from Mali gives birth to 9 babies in Morocco

A Malian woman has given birth to nine babies at once after expecting seven, according to Malis Minister of Health and the Moroccan clinic where the nonuplets were born. It appeared to be the first time on record that a woman had given bir...

IWF welcomes revised Olympic qualification system for weightlifting at Tokyo

The International Weightlifting Federation IWF has welcomed the publication of the revised Olympic qualification system, developed in agreement with the International Olympic Committee IOC. Adjustments had become necessary in order to refle...

Noida Authority to set up 50-bed Covid hospital by May 8

Amid the surge in Covid-19 cases, the Noida Authority on Thursday said it is setting up a makeshift hospital that will have 50 beds with oxygen support for patients and the facility is likely to go functional by May 8. Setting up a makeshif...

Give Feedback