Japan to impose COVID quasi-emergency on 3 areas hosting U.S. bases

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is set to place three Japanese prefectures under a quasi-state of emergency on Friday after surges in COVID-19 cases, News.Az reports citing Kyodo News.

The quasi-emergency declarations for Okinawa, Yamaguchi and Hiroshima are expected to be effective from Sunday to Jan. 31, allowing local governments to bolster anti-coronavirus measures and request dining establishments to shorten their business hours as health experts warn of a sixth wave in Japan of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The central government will first consult with experts and explain to parliament the necessity of taking the tougher measures requested by the three prefectures. After the process, Kishida is expected to make a formal decision later in the day.

If declared, it will be the first quasi-state of emergency under Kishida, who became prime minister in October when COVID-19 curbs had been entirely ended across the country.


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