Japan to extend virus emergency to end of month, expand coverage
Japan will extend the COVID-19 state of emergency currently in effect in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo prefectures until the end of the month, the minister in charge of the government's coronavirus response said Friday.
Tokyo: Japan will extend the COVID-19 state of emergency currently in effect in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo prefectures until the end of the month, the minister in charge of the government's coronavirus response said Friday.
Yasutoshi Nishimura also said that Aichi and Fukuoka prefectures will be added to the four prefectures under the emergency measures from Wednesday.
He told a meeting that a state of emergency being declared in Aichi and Fukuoka prefectures will allow their respective governors and authorities to implement stricter measures in a bid to prevent the further spread of the novel coronavirus.
Nishimura's remarks on the extension of the state of emergency and the expanded coverage are to be formalized in the afternoon by the government.
Government officials said the previous day that Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga will declare a state of emergency in Aichi and Fukuoka prefectures and confirm the extension of the current emergency periods on Friday.
Despite the nation's third state of emergency being declared, some prefectural governors, among criticism over the central government's sluggish vaccination rollout, believe the anti-virus measures to date have been toothless amid the ongoing fourth wave of infections.
Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, for example, has voiced concern over the rising cases of highly-contagious virus variants spreading around the capital.
She believes the virus situation in Tokyo remains severe to the point it is too early to lift the state of emergency
"We believe the state of emergency needs to be extended, based on analyses from a variety of angles," Koike said. (ANI/Xinhua)