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
Jan 26
Lawmakers in Japan have begun debating proposals to toughen up COVID-19 regulations. That includes controversial revisions allowing authorities to levy fines against rulebreakers. (NHK)
Jan 26
Japan will hold a coronavirus vaccination simulation in Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture, on Wednesday, the minister in charge of vaccination efforts said. (Japan Times)
Jan 26
In December, the central government finalized its basic policy for so-called integrated resorts (IRs) hosting casinos as well as shopping malls, hotels and other facilities. (Japan Times)
Jan 26
Japan, never one to do anything by halves, announced an ambitions quest in 2016 to increase tourism by a mammoth 67% in the proceeding five years. (
Jan 25
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga acknowledged on Monday that he has a sore throat and had lost his voice, raising concerns that heavy pressure to deal with the coronavirus pandemic and criticism over the administration’s response has been taking a physical toll on him. (Japan Times)
Jan 24
Japan is considering using its national ID system for its coronavirus vaccine rollout program, hoping to avoid the pitfalls and confusion that was created when the government dispersed economic aid earlier in the pandemic. (Nikkei)
Jan 22
A Japanese court upheld a ban on dual citizenship on Thursday, rejecting a suit that challenged the measure's constitutionality and sought damages for those affected. (AFP)
Jan 22
Japan has joined a battle of diplomatic notes over the South China Sea dispute, adding to pressure on Beijing over its expansive claims in the strategically important waterway. (South China Morning Post)
Jan 21
The Tokyo High Court on Thursday ordered the operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant to pay damages to evacuated residents, but it overturned a lower court ruling that had also acknowledged the central government's responsibility over the 2011 nuclear crisis. (Japan Times)
Jan 21
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Thursday congratulated Joe Biden on his inauguration as U.S. president and expressed hope the Japan-U.S. alliance will strengthen further. (Kyodo)
Jan 21
Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide defended the government's policies against the coronavirus while answering questions about his recent policy speech in the Diet. (NHK)
Jan 21
This film introduces Japan's efforts to achieve an inclusive society through the latest technology to promote social participation of people with disabilities. (外務省 / MOFA)
Jan 21
The chief of Japan's COVID-19 vaccination program on Wednesday denied media reports that vaccinations for the general public may start in May, as the country battles a third wave that has brought record numbers of infections and serious cases. (Japan Times)
Jan 20
Taro Kono, newly appointed as minister in charge of rolling out COVID-19 vaccines, said Tuesday he would tackle the challenge with a complicated logistics plan to deliver an effective blitz of vaccinations quickly. (Japan Times)
Jan 19
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga told reporters Monday that a new ministerial position has been created to ensure the smooth rollout of Japan's vaccination program. (Nikkei)
Jan 18
Japanese Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide has vowed that he will be on the frontline of the fight against the coronavirus to overcome the difficulties. (NHK)
Jan 18
Finance Minister Taro Aso pledged Monday to rejuvenate the economy, which has been badly hit by the spread of the coronavirus, and advance structural reforms for the future after the pandemic. (Japan Times)
Jan 16
A Sapporo court on Friday ruled as unconstitutional the now-defunct eugenics protection law that mandated the government stop people with disabilities from having children, but it rejected a claim for damages sought by a man in Sapporo. (Japan Times)
Jan 16
Tokyo prosecutors on Friday indicted former agriculture minister Yoshikawa Takamori on a charge of receiving bribes from a major egg producer while in office. (NHK)
Jan 15
The government's new program to provide one-off cash benefits of up to Y400,000 to pandemic-affected small companies will cover not only suppliers for eating and drinking facilities but also ryokan Japanese-style inns and taxi operators, the industry ministry has said. (Japan Times)