The Strategist

Japan to declare a state of emergency in Tokyo during the Olympics

07/09/2021 - 04:00

Japan will impose a state of emergency in connection with the coronavirus in Tokyo from 12 July. In the coming days, the organisers of the Olympics will have to agree on whether at least part of the spectators will be able to watch the competition live.

Japan is getting ready to declare a state of emergency because of the coronavirus in Tokyo from July 12 to August 22, said Japanese Economy Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura, who heads the government program to combat the coronavirus, Reuters reported. The Olympics, which are scheduled to run from July 23 to August 8, could then take place without spectators.

"There continues to be a trend of increasing infections in Tokyo, in addition to the spread of the delta strain. Meanwhile, the summer season is coming, when public activity is increasing. In order to contain the infection and protect the health system, we are introducing a state of emergency," Nishimura said.

Japan has not had explosive outbreaks of COVID-19 like many other countries, Reuters noted. The country has recorded more than 810,000 cases and 14,900 deaths due to the effects of the virus since the pandemic began. 

Nishimura announced the new state of emergency after the number of new cases in a 24-hour period rose to 920 on Wednesday, July 7, the highest since mid-May. Meanwhile, only a quarter of the population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in Japan, according to Reuters.