Japan Decides on Thursday on Whether to Partly Lift State of Emergency
posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
NHK reported on Tuesday that the Japanese government will decide on Thursday whether to lift the country's state of emergency early in more than 30 prefectures in the country. However, NHK added that even if the state of emergency is lifted in these prefectures, Tokyo and some other prefectures are still expected to maintain the state of emergency.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe stated on Monday that he will consult with a panel of experts, including economists, before making the Thursday decision.
Abe declared a state of emergency in Tokyo, Kanagawa, Saitama, Chiba, Osaka, Hyogo, and Fukuoka from April 7 to May 6. Kyoto Governor Takatoshi Nishiwaki asked the Japanese government on April 10 to add Kyoto to the state of emergency. Aichi Governor Hideaki Ōmura similarly asked the Japanese government on April 16 to add his prefecture to the list, and then independently declared a state of emergency on April 17. Hokkaido had lifted its own three-week state of emergency on March 19, only to declare a second state of emergency on April 12.
Abe then announced on April 16 that the national government expanded the state of emergency nationwide until May 6. As required by the newly enacted law that allowed for this declaration, Abe met with the government's COVID-19 task force of experts before formally announcing the expansion. Last week, the government extended the state of emergency to May 31.
As of Monday, Japan has reported 15,798 cases of the virus (including 712 cases from the Diamond Princess cruise ship), with 621 deaths (including 13 deaths from the Diamond Princess cruise ship).