Tokyo, Jan. 7 (Jiji Press)–Osaka Prefecture is considering asking the Japanese government to issue an emergency declaration over the novel coronavirus for the western prefecture and two neighboring prefectures–Kyoto and Hyogo, it was learned Thursday.
The Osaka prefectural government is mulling the move as the daily number of newly confirmed infection cases in the prefecture has been rewriting its record highs recently.
The central prefecture of Aichi is also considering the possibility of asking for a coronavirus state of emergency for the prefecture.
The Japanese government decided Thursday to declare a fresh coronavirus state of emergency for Tokyo and three surrounding prefectures–Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa–which will be in place between Friday and Feb. 7.
“I think we should ask the central government to issue a state of emergency for Osaka,” Osaka Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura told reporters at the prefectural office on Thursday. Osaka is expected to make such a request on Saturday at the earliest, together with Kyoto and Hyogo, informed sources said.
Kyoto Governor Takatoshi Nishiwaki and Hyogo Governor Toshizo Ido expressed their support for the idea. “We are in a stage where we should study the option of asking for the declaration of a state of emergency,” Nishiwaki said. “We have to consider making such a request,” Ido said.
At a press conference on Thursday, Aichi Governor Hideaki Omura said that he will closely monitor the infection situation during the three-day weekend through Monday, with an eye to seeking a state of emergency for his prefecture.
Elsewhere in the nation, Miyazaki Prefecture, southeastern Japan, confirmed 105 new infection cases on Thursday, its record daily high. The prefectural government decided its own state of emergency, calling on residents to refrain from going out, among other things.
Miyazaki Governor Shunji Kono hinted at the possibility of requesting the central government to declare a state of emergency for the prefecture if the number of new infection cases does not fall.
The eastern prefecture of Ibaraki asked local residents to avoid going out for nonessential reasons.
“It’s not an issue only for Tokyo and the three neighboring prefectures,” Shuichi Abe, governor of the central prefecture of Nagano, said. “The situation is very critical for all over the country,” he said.
Tatsuji Sugimoto, governor of Fukui Prefecture, also central Japan, called on local residents to refrain from making nonessential trips to the Tokyo metropolitan area.