Japan declares a state of emergency in Tokyo as the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase

Japan declares a state of emergency in Tokyo as the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase

The Japanese government has decided to declare a state of emergency in Tokyo as the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase. Most likely, the Olympic Games scheduled to start on July 23 will not have the participation of spectators.

(Artwork: Par Ned Snowman/Shutterstock)

The state of emergency will be maintained from July 12 and until August 22, after the end of the Olympics. The official statement will be published after the meeting on 8/7. This is the 4th time Japan has decided to declare a state of emergency due to COVID-19 since April 2020.

Talking to reporters on July 7, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga acknowledged the increase in the number of infections. Suga said he would “take all possible measures” to control the spread of the corona virus. On July 7, Tokyo recorded an additional 920 cases of COVID-19, thereby marking the highest infection rate in this country since May 13.

This decision is likely to have a negative impact on the organization of the Tokyo Olympics. Suga once said that if a state of emergency was declared during the Olympics, events would be held without spectators.

Previously, the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Organizing Committee, along with the International Olympic Committee, limited the number of spectators to 10,000 at the large venue, while the smaller venues were only half-filled. The two sides will soon discuss with relevant parties to discuss how to respond to new developments.

The organizing committee in Tokyo is considering holding events after 9pm and without audience participation. For events that take place earlier, the audience limit will be reduced to around 5,000 people.

On June 20, the Japanese government lifted the state of emergency previously declared in Tokyo. The city has maintained a “nearly” state of emergency, which is expected to end on July 11.

In some areas such as Saitama, Chiba, Kanagawa and Osaka, the “nearly” emergency is expected to last until August 22; while this status will be removed in Hokkaido, Aichi, Kyoto, Hyogo and Fukuoka. The decision was made to facilitate the development of tourism, in the context of the Olympic and traditional Bon holidays next month.

Japan is on track to complete vaccination for the elderly by the end of July. The vaccination rate in this country is only about 15%.

On July 7, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government asked localities to strengthen disease control measures, such as suspending the sale of alcohol at restaurants, and plans to continue to require bars and restaurants. Restaurants close before 8pm and require emergency establishments not to serve alcohol.

According to Nikkei Asia,

Phan Anh

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