TOKYO 2020

Japan Extends Emergency Amid Vaccine, Olympic Uncertainty

Feb 2, 2021, 5:11 AM
An employee wearing a plastic face visor and face mask closes her shop on February 2, 2021 in Tokyo...
An employee wearing a plastic face visor and face mask closes her shop on February 2, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. Japans Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is shortly expected to announce a 1-month extension to the current state of emergency in place across much of the country as the nation grapples with a third, and most virulent, wave of covid-19 coronavirus. (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)
(Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

TOKYO (AP) — Japan is extending a coronavirus state of emergency in Tokyo and nine other areas through March 7.

The announcement by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga of the one-month extension comes amid growing uncertainty over the national rollout of vaccines and the hosting of the Tokyo Olympics this summer.

Under the state of emergency, the government has issued non-binding requests for people to avoid crowds and eating out in groups, and for restaurants and bars to close by 8 p.m.

New cases have declined in Tokyo and nationwide since early January, but experts say hospitals remain flooded with serious cases and that preventive measures should remain in place.

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Japan Extends Emergency Amid Vaccine, Olympic Uncertainty