Suga says Japan will expand coronavirus emergency to Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo
Japan Times -- Jan 12
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said Tuesday the government will expand a state of emergency declared over the coronavirus pandemic to Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo prefectures.

The declaration will be made as early as Wednesday, government sources said, adding that Gifu and Aichi prefectures may also come under the expansion at the same time.

Suga made the comment during an executive meeting of the Liberal Democratic Party on Tuesday morning.

The governors of the three western prefectures had asked the central government to extend the state of emergency, which took effect Friday for Tokyo and some neighboring areas, to their prefectures in response to a resurgence of the virus.

By declaring a state of emergency based on a law to address the spread of the virus, the central government enables local authorities to urge people to stay at home as much as possible and to call on eateries to shorten opening hours.

In April, Japan declared a state of emergency for some of the country’s 47 prefectures and later expanded it nationwide. The government fully lifted it in late May.

Suga last week declared the one-month state of emergency covering Tokyo and the neighboring prefectures of Chiba, Kanagawa and Saitama in response to a request from their governors.

新型コロナウイルスの感染拡大により、政府は13日にも大阪、兵庫、京都の3府県に緊急事態宣言の発出を決めます。  大阪、兵庫、京都の知事が特別措置法に基づく緊急事態宣言の発出を要請したのを受けて、政府は13日にも3府県を対象地域とする方向で調整しています。  また、愛知と岐阜も12日、政府に対して緊急事態宣言の発出を要請する方向で、対象地域に追加される可能性があります。  対象に加わると、各自治体の判断のもと飲食店に対する午後8時までの営業時間短縮要請などが行われる見通しです。
News sources: Japan Times, ANNnewsCH
Feb 27
Japan's prime minister says coronavirus conditions in six prefectures have improved enough to lift a state of emergency on Sunday. But, the declaration will remain in place for Tokyo and three neighboring prefectures. (NHK)
Feb 27
The government on Friday adopted a bill designed to prevent through law the abuse of GPS monitoring devices for stalking. (Japan Times)
Feb 26
Japan's minister in charge of coronavirus vaccination says vaccines for the elderly will likely be delivered to all municipalities in the country by the end of June. (NHK)
Feb 26
Japan will consider resuming its subsidy program aimed at promoting domestic tourism only in some parts of the country even if the current state of emergency over the novel coronavirus is completely lifted, tourism minister Kazuyoshi Akaba said Thursday. (Kyodo)
Feb 24
Japan's top government spokesperson says measures against the coronavirus will be eased in stages even if the government lifts an emergency declaration earlier than initially planned. (NHK)
Feb 23
An employee of major Japanese trading house Itochu Corporation has been released from prison in China after serving his sentence of three years for harming national security. (NHK)
Feb 23
The governor of Shimane Prefecture in western Japan has urged the central government to resolve a territorial dispute with South Korea over the Takeshima Islands. (NHK)
Feb 22
Japan is considering introducing waiting lists for COVID-19 vaccinations to avoid waste, the minister in charge of inoculation effort has said, as the country prepares to expand the program's scope. (Japan Times)
Feb 22
More communications ministry officials have been found to have been treated to expensive meals by a son of Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, the ministry said Monday, further widening the scandal that has already brought four senior bureaucrats under scrutiny. (Japan Today)
Feb 20
Japan's Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide has expressed to the Group of Seven industrialized nations his determination to hold the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer. (NHK)
Feb 20
The Japanese government has decided to amend the country's juvenile act, in accordance with the revised civil code that lowers the age of adulthood from the current 20 to 18 in April of next year. (NHK)
Feb 19
The Japanese government plans to revise the immigration law to allow some foreigners who have received deportation orders to stay with family members until they leave the country. (NHK)
Feb 18
Hashimoto Seiko has officially been chosen as the president of the Tokyo Games organizing committee. She stepped down from her cabinet position as Olympics Minister. (NHK)
Feb 18
As job losses surge due to the pandemic, demand for food handouts has skyrocketed in Japan, prompting the government to release stockpiled rice to charities for the first time last May. Another expanded programme started this month. (Reuters)
Feb 18
After a sexism row sparked by Tokyo Olympics chief’s saying women talked too much at meetings, Japan’s ruling party has said it wants women to attend key meetings – but only if they do not talk. (aljazeera.com)
Feb 18
Japan’s 2021 defence budget is set to be its largest ever, continuing a near decade-long trend set in motion by former prime minister Shinzo Abe. Under Abe’s watch, Japan has increased its defence budget every year since 2005. (eastasiaforum.org)
Feb 18
Japan and the United States agreed to extend an agreement on how much Toyko pays for the upkeep of US military bases on its soil for another year as they continue talks on a new pact. (aljazeera.com)
Feb 18
Japan has gracefully apologized to the women of South Korea who once served as sex slaves to the Japanese Army during World War II. (newsonjapan.com)
Feb 17
Another ruling Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker quit the party Wednesday following a report that he visited a luxurious Tokyo nightlife venue despite government calls to avoid unnecessary outings under a state of emergency to contain the spread of the coronavirus. (Japan Times)
Feb 17
Seiko Hashimoto, the Cabinet minister in charge of the Tokyo Games and a former Olympic athlete, has emerged as the Tokyo Organising Committee’s sole candidate to replace Yoshiro Mori, who stepped down last week over his sexist remarks, media reports said Wednesday. (Japan Times)