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Suga comments on recent surge in number of COVID-19 cases in Tokyo

  • March 30, 2020
  • , NHK
  • JMH Summary

NHK reported at noon that in response to a recent surge in the number of COVID-19 cases in Tokyo, Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga said Japan is on the brink of “a state of emergency” and that the GOJ will work more closely with prefectural governments to curb the spread of the virus. Suga reportedly said: “The current situation is such that we are barely managing not to require to declare a state of emergency…. We are at an extremely important juncture in preventing the rapid spread of the virus. The government will work more closely with local governments and make all-out efforts to prevent the spread of the virus based on the Basic Policies for the Novel Coronavirus Disease Control.” He went on to say: “We need to carefully make an assessment based on various types of expertise in view of the fact that declaring a state of emergency would have a grave impact on the people’s lives.” Concerning the possibility of a lockdown, Suga said: “The U.S. and European nations, where the numbers of COVID-19 cases have risen explosively, have had no choice but to impose forceful measures such as lockdowns or mandatory stay-at-home orders. We are currently causing a great deal of inconvenience for the people, but we hope they will understand that this is to avoid imposing tougher measures.” Suga reportedly added that the fight against the new coronavirus may become prolonged, and said: “It is difficult to assess the effect of the stay-at-home request this past weekend, but we will work closely and maintain communication with local governments based on a shared awareness of the crisis and an understanding that we are at an extremely important juncture in preventing the rapid spread of the virus in Japan.” 

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