Tokyo, Kyoto, Okinawa set for stricter measures

NHK -- Apr 10
The Japanese government will enforce stricter coronavirus measures in Tokyo, Kyoto and Okinawa from Monday without declaring a state of emergency.

The formal decision came during a task force meeting on Friday. The measures will continue until May 5 in Kyoto and Okinawa, and May 11 in Tokyo.

They are already in place for Osaka, Hyogo and Miyagi prefectures, where they will run until May 5.

Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide said he hopes infections can now be sufficiently curbed without declaring a state of emergency.

The measures include asking dining establishments to shorten their business hours to no later than 8 p.m. Suga said officials will visit all relevant establishments to confirm they are complying. Punishments will be imposed on those who do not.

New variants of the coronavirus are currently spreading across the Kansai region. The government is urging people to refrain from nonessential travel across prefectures, even during national holidays in late April and early May.

The government will monitor the situation with the governors of Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa prefectures, and may consider expanding the stricter measures to those areas.