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NEWS: Japan Adds 7 Prefectures to COVID-19 State of Emergency




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ximpalullaorg



Joined: 16 Jan 2007
Posts: 301
PostPosted: Wed Jan 13, 2021 11:58 am Reply with quote
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The government had already denied the entry of foreigners from most countries last month due to the spread of a new, more contagious variant of the virus that causes COVID-19.


Correction: Believed to be a more contagious variant. There is only epidemiological data (and models), not actual biological data (which requires far more time). The "it spreads faster in children" news has already been debunked, for example. In two weeks there will be real evidence (for example, the surveillance reports from Denmark).
Aside, that - and I know that I'm in the minority - it's kind of sad that even Japan is choosing on the lockdown mantra, instead of preparing the health services better (or you know, speeding up the approval of the vaccines).
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samuelp



Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 2140
Location: San Antonio, USA
PostPosted: Wed Jan 13, 2021 1:02 pm Reply with quote
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The government had already denied the entry of foreigners from most countries last month due to the spread of a new, more contagious variant of the virus that causes COVID-19.


This is sort of over sensationalized news (or rather, it's not framed correctly).
Last month, it's true that they officially stopped issuing new visas to foreigners after they had started back in September, but in practice only people with special circumstances were getting new visas anyway. This new change only affects about 10 other asian countries which had a special exception to the no travel visa rule, and removes that exception. The other actual good change is that _all_ people entering the country, even Japanese citizens, are now subject to the "proof of negative test before boarding plane" + "negative test at the airport" + "quarantine once you arrive" rules.

At least at this point they have not shut down the boarder for foreigner _residents_ of Japan, aka people with permanent resident status or spouse visas, like it was from April to August. If they go back to that paradigm, then I'll join in the chorus of shaming them for discriminating against their foreign residents. But for now, I think this latest step is prudent: there's no good reason to allow people from Taiwan or whatever into Japan even if those countries still have very little virus load. Things are changing too fast to keep up with the reality and there has been little demand to travel to Japan from those countries anyway since they likely cannot easily return BACK anyway without quarantine.

Numbers in Japan have dropped this week from the highs, so perhaps the voluntary state of emergency is actually working to suppress the numbers a bit. We'll know more in a week or so.
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