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Japan governors urge state to prevent coronavirus rebound

  • March 20, 2021
  • , Jiji Press , 2:46 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, March 20 (Jiji Press)–Japanese prefectural governors adopted Saturday a set of proposals to the central government for preventing a rebound in infections with the novel coronavirus ahead of the full lifting of its second state of emergency over the virus at the end of Sunday.

In the package, adopted at a videoconference, the National Governors’ Association asked the government to thoroughly conduct active epidemiological investigations to identify infection routes and polymerase chain reaction tests on a large scale as part of the fight against the coronavirus, including mutant strains.

The government was also asked to swiftly disclose information about vaccines, including when they will become available and the amounts of supplies, and create manuals on dealing with possible adverse events from vaccinations.

The state of emergency, issued in January, now covers Tokyo and neighboring Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa prefectures. Seven out of the 43 other prefectures of the country were also placed under the emergency temporarily.

The governors also called for effective support measures regardless of region and industry, saying that the economic and employment situations in areas not under the state of emergency are also tough.

At the online meeting, Shuichi Abe, governor of the central prefecture of Nagano, said, “I want the central government to clearly show its stance of supporting regional economies.”

Tatsuya Maruyama, governor of the western prefecture of Shimane, asked the government to “equally treat businesses in areas that are seeing a spike in infections and those in areas that are not.”

The association adopted a declaration showing its resolve to curb infections at a time when people tend to travel and dine together toward the change of the fiscal year.

Noting that farewell, welcome and cherry blossom-viewing parties, and other events that could help spread the virus tend to be held at this time of the year, the association called on people to make sure that they wash their hands and wear face masks to prevent infection with the coronavirus.

The association requested the government to issue a similar strong message to the public. Japan’s current fiscal 2020 ends on March 31.

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