Japan to lift state of emergency except in Okinawa
Tokyo [Japan], June 18 (ANI): The Japanese government has officially decided to end the coronavirus state of emergency on Sunday for nine of the 10 prefectures covered. Seven of the nine prefectures will then have focused restrictions through July 11.
NHK World reported that the government also decided to extend the state of emergency for Okinawa Prefecture through July 11 because the healthcare system there remains overstretched.
The decision came at a government task force meeting on Thursday afternoon.
Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide, health minister Tamura Norihisa, and Nishimura Yasutoshi, the minister in charge of coronavirus response, were among those who attended. Tokyo and Osaka are among the seven prefectures where a state of emergency will be replaced with rigorous restrictions involving focused steps.
Such restrictions to prevent the spread of infections are now in place in five other prefectures. The government plans to end them in Gifu and Mie prefectures on Sunday, while extending them for Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa prefectures through July 11.
Specifically, for the period through July 11, the state of emergency will be in place only for Okinawa Prefecture. Focused restrictions will apply to Tokyo and nine prefectures, which are Hokkaido, Saitama, Chiba, Kanagawa, Aichi, Osaka, Hyogo, Kyoto and Fukuoka.
For Tokyo and the nine prefectures, governors are to ask local pubs and restaurants to close by 8 pm. Japan has reported 781,526 coronavirus cases on Thursday. (ANI)