Tokyo metropolitan gov't eyes extension of COVID-19 emergency

Baku, May 6, AZERTAC

The Tokyo metropolitan government is considering requesting the central government to extend the ongoing state of emergency in the capital aimed at stemming surging coronavirus infections, an official said Thursday, according to Kyodo News.

The metropolitan government is expected to make a final decision after hearing opinions from health experts at a meeting in the afternoon, according to the official.

The possibility of extending the state of emergency issued for Tokyo and the three western prefectures of Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo for two weeks to one month from the currently scheduled end date of Tuesday has been discussed.

The Tokyo metropolitan government is eyeing extending the measure through the end of May, the official said, on the back of increasing reports of infections involving highly contagious variants of the virus.

In addition to Tokyo, the Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo prefectural governments are also planning to request that the central government extend the state of emergency.

On Wednesday, Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike suggested the need for talks on a potential extension, telling reporters she regards the situation in the capital as "still quite serious."

The number of daily consultations regarding fever rose to 2,500 on Tuesday, according to Koike, hitting the same level as the year-end and New Year period in which the country experienced a third wave of infections.

The number of novel coronavirus cases reported during the Golden Week holiday was relatively low compared with the week before, but Koike urged people to continue to avoid contact with others by working from home and taking other measures, saying hospitals were not operating as usual during the holiday.

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