Tokyo [Japan], May 23 (ANI): With Tokyo recording 535 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, the government may extend the current state of emergency in the capital and other prefectures.
On a TV program on Sunday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato referred to the possibility of extending the state of emergency in Tokyo, Osaka and seven other prefectures beyond its May 31 expiration date, reported The Japan Times.
As the government formally placed Okinawa Prefecture under the state of emergency today, Kato indicated that, if extended, a new deadline for the nine prefectures could coincide with the June 20 expiration date for Okinawa.
Under the metropolitan government's criteria, the number of severely ill coronavirus patients decreased by one to 61.
The total number of people who have tested positive for the virus in Tokyo since the pandemic began now stands at 156,785, as NHK news.
As Tokyo will host the Olympics from July 23, concerns are growing over the spread of more infectious coronavirus variants and the sluggish vaccine rollout in the country.
In areas placed under the state of emergency, restaurants are being told to close by 8 pm and refrain from serving alcohol or offering karaoke services, Kyodo News reported.
It further reported that Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga declared a state of emergency, the third since the start of the pandemic, in Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo from April 25 to May 11, later adding Aichi and Fukuoka from Wednesday and extending it to May 31. (ANI)