Japan Considers Extending COVID-19 State of Emergency
posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
The Japanese national government is leaning toward extending the current new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) state of emergency in four prefectures, after the Osaka prefectural government reported it would ask for an extension. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is consulting with cabinet officials and experts on Wednesday, and could arrive at a decision within this week.
The Japanese government declared a state of emergency in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, and Hyogo prefectures on April 23, which is slated to lift on May 11. The state of emergency was intended to curb the amount of travel during the country's ongoing Golden Week holidays.
Osaka recorded 884 new COVID-19 infections on Tuesday, and Tokyo recorded 609. Overall, Tuesday added 4,199 new cases throughout Japan. Japan has 1,083 people in serious condition on Tuesday (one less than Monday's record high), which is putting the hospital system under heavy strain. Osaka alone has 65.
The Japanese government also declared on April 27 that the above four prefectures, as well as prefectures in a "quasi-state of emergency," will continue restricting events until June. (Previous restrictions were set to end by the end of April.)
The new state of emergency has seen the opening of some films delayed until theaters reopen. Some anime-related events, such as the Love Live! Sunshine!! Aqours 5th Anniversary concert on May 1-2, and the Sound! Euphonium festival planned in Uji on May 15, have been postponed or canceled.