Japan is extending the state of emergency until one month before the Olympics

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On Friday, the Japanese government extended the state of emergency in Tokyo and eight other prefectures until at least June 20, one month before the city is scheduled to host the Olympics.

Despite the decrease in new infections with the Coronavirus, Japan still records more than 4,000 cases per day in the meantime A long fourth wave That led to straining medical systems in many cities. Officials said the restrictions on companies enacted in April had to continue until the number of cases decreased further.

“The newly reported cases are on a downward trend, but they are still at a high level,” Yasutoshi Nishimura, the government minister leading Japan’s response to Covid-19, said Friday.

Under the emergency measures, restaurants, stores and other large businesses have been ordered to reduce their working hours, and restaurants and restaurants are prohibited from serving alcoholic drinks.

Vaccine introduction in Japan has been among the slowest in the industrialized world, with only 2.4 percent of the population getting full vaccines, according to New York Times Database. This week, the country opened its first mass vaccination sites in a bid to start vaccination. But the current government’s goals are limited to fully vaccinating people over the age of 65 by the end of July, when the Summer Games begin.

Amid frustration with the government’s response to the pandemic, popular opposition to hosting the Olympics, which has been postponed from last year, has grown. In a recent survey, 83% of Japanese people They said they did not want Tokyo to host the Games. The Daily Asahi Shimbun, the official Olympic partner, published an editorial this week inviting the Japanese Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga, To cancel games.

But Japanese organizers and officials insisted that the games continue. On Thursday, Toshiro Moto, chief executive of the Tokyo Olympics, said, “Nobody in the Executive Council has explicitly mentioned the view that we should cancel or postpone the Games,” adding that with the decline in coronavirus cases, public opinion “will improve.”

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