politics

Japan lifts state of emergency for Tokyo, 4 other prefectures

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By Natsuko Fukue

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Does it mean Universities will also open from tomorrow?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

About time!!!

-4 ( +10 / -14 )

About time! Absolutely!

-7 ( +7 / -14 )

Three cheers, now get back to work!!!

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

Which means it’s time for people to go back to crowded trains and work like slaves again. Won’t be surprised if there’s a second wave that hits the country.

3 ( +16 / -13 )

Which means it’s time for people to go back to crowded trains and work like slaves again. Won’t be surprised if there’s a second wave that hits the country.

How uplifting.

-2 ( +8 / -10 )

@hmdrpthk

Does it mean Universities will also open from tomorrow?

Depends on the uni, I presume. I know at least one major one, which will stay in online teaching until August.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Just rode past a tiny squashed-up bar/food place at my tiny local station. All seats were occupied and not one mask in sight.

13 ( +14 / -1 )

Now the emergency has been lifted, it’s time to start distancing japan from China, but knowing abenomask he will do the reverse and start pitching for more Chinese tourists..

11 ( +13 / -2 )

Beto Ramirez: "Won’t be surprised if there’s a second wave that hits the country."

It's already started, albeit slowly. Numbers are slowly rising again from what I've heard -- a week after the "restrictions" were lifted in most prefectures, sure enough. We'll know by mid-June.

Jimizo: "How uplifting."

Yeah, well, I'd take realism over someone looking at a hurricane ravaged island saying, "Not so bad! Have fun!" just because the facts get some people down.

2 ( +16 / -14 )

All the big nation started to make same decision at same time around.

Meetings over the calls among leaders and big companies must have gone smooth along with the online transfer.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@smithinjapan....sure, lets wait for another 2 weeks....oh man!

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Yeah, well, I'd take realism over someone looking at a hurricane ravaged island saying, "Not so bad! Have fun!" just because the facts get some people down.

What’s your solution?

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Interesting photograph. Few people seem to be watching Abe do his thing.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If you're worried about a second wave stay home and don't go to work because as you love to say health is more important.

For the rest of us, lets go have fun and get back to living.

-1 ( +12 / -13 )

@carpslidy

Well said!

100% agree!

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

people would have to adapt to a "new normal" and continue to avoid the "three Cs" -- closed spaces, crowded places and close contact.

I assume this means we should not get the trains in to work.....

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The "new normal" is more Japanese are realizing that Abe is a joke, and more people will look for alternatives to products manufactured in China.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

TigersTokyoDome: "I assume this means we should not get the trains in to work....."

The government and companies already negotiated with the virus -- in exchange for giving up a large part of our incomes as well as social lives and enjoyment, we are allowed to herd ourselves off to the companies untouched by the virus. We only need to sacrifice all the good things, not the slavery.

-12 ( +2 / -14 )

Age of Asparagus: "and more people will look for alternatives to products manufactured in China."

For half a year, tops. Then they'll go back to buying cheaper goods.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

I agree that it's probably the best option to open the economy up once again, but I do wish there was a little more pressure on companies to allow workers the option to work from home.

I understand this isn't always possible though.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

@smithinjapan

You are just moaning.

What is your solution?

10 ( +14 / -4 )

When will they open up travel to Japan for foreigners?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

@Jimizo - He doesn't have a solution. He just loves to complain about life in Japan. Just go back over 10 years over posts on this very website. It is a true mystery to me why anyone would remain here (for all its faults) when he could have having such a good time back in Canada. He does 'miss the snow' after all (on his IG) - Think we have plenty of that here too!

@James Stowe: Sadly, I think that is a little way off yet. The Government has just clamped down even further.

More disturbingly - and thank you for a lawyer for taking the case up with the Government , foreign residents of Japan are prohibited from re-entering Japan at present, regardless of status. Japan is the only G7 country being so draconian. Nobody has a problem with with having to go into a 14 day quarantine period or being tested for the virus at the airport, but being denied entry as a Permanent Resident and a tax payer for 30 years does aggrieve me.

5 ( +12 / -7 )

Which means it’s time for people to go back to crowded trains and work like slaves again. 

Do you have any concept of what slavery is? Japanese people work hard but are hardly slaves. They live in a first world nation. They have clean water and access to high quality food, pharmaceuticals and adequate health care. These advances in the human condition require labor and human ingenuity. Not having these things is closer to a slavish life than an office job.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

I'm still trying to work out what smithinjapan's point was exactly.?

There was nothing controversial with my post. They want us to avoid closed, crowded spaces with contact. So I'm asking how we should get to work.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

No medications. No vaccines. We do not have solutions yet. I will keep staying home.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Japan's overriding philosophy is, when in doubt, imitate whatever the United States is doing.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

When will they open up travel to Japan for foreigners?

I've seen a few Tokyo-bound flights listed for summer.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

carpslidyToday 08:43 pm JST

If you're worried about a second wave stay home and don't go to work because as you love to say health is more important.

For the rest of us, lets go have fun and get back to living.

It would be a reasonable comment if there was choice. But there is no choice. When your Government and company won't provide you support...you have to risk your life. (not me personally, but people I care about), That is my issue with Japan's continued (silent) goal of Herd immunity.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Do you have any concept of what slavery is? Japanese people work hard but are hardly slaves. They live in a first world nation. They have clean water and access to high quality food, pharmaceuticals and adequate health care. These advances in the human condition require labor and human ingenuity. Not having these things is closer to a slavish life than an office job.

How is this different than any first world culture?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It is hard to eat and drink with a mask on. I tried but got cotton in my food.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

How is this different than any first world culture?

Sorry wolfpack, I misunderstood your post when I wrote this. I think you and I were actually on the same page.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Strangerland: How is this different than any first world culture?

It’s not - but that wasn’t the point of my comment.

spinning plates: It would be a reasonable comment if there was choice. But there is no choice. When your Government and company won't provide you support...you have to risk your life. 

No choice if you are not given support? What are you talking about? Governments and companies are made up of people. You expect other people to take the risks to bring food to you? Process your check for which you expect to do nothing in return?

You absolutely have a choice - you can play it safe while others take risks to serve you. But such an arrangement cannot last for long. We have reached that point. It’s hard to understand how some people cannot see that.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

. But there is no choice. When your Government and company won't provide you support...you have to risk your life

True people of high risk need to be careful and with a very sick family member I understand your worries, but it also must be remembered the virus isnt killing every or even a large number ill or elderly people in Japan.

If the virus could be eradicated that would be wonderful, but as that doesn't appear realistic. it seems better to accept the situation, take practical precautions and enjoy life.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@age-of-asparagus I certainly hope that you’re right about that. I mean, in keeping with the positivity of a lot of you guys posting, I am certainly hopeful that it will happen. Keeping my fingers crossed.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Lets see what happen in the next 2 weeks

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Japan's strategy has worked somehow. Not sure if it was luck or brains or a bit of both. The number of infections and deaths in Japan (terrible for the 830 families and friends of those who died of course) are a pittance compared to most other developed countries with a population of over 60,000,000. Nothing short of amazing and one wonders if the virus has a worse effect on non-Asians for some reason? Did it mutate into something stronger after it left the first epicenter of China and headed for Europe then the US?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

it seems better to accept the situation, take practical precautions and enjoy life.

Yes - accept that there is a risk that can no longer be avoided and get on with it. We have to resume life but it should be done responsibly. As we do so we should remember that the elderly and sick still need extra care. This means from their own children and friends too. The rest need to get back to work and get back to living. Part of the cruelty of this viral pandemic is the hard choice that it has forced upon us all.

I will continue to wear a mask out in public where appropriate to protect others and myself. But unless you are in an active hot - zone - and there are very few in Japan at the moment- get to work and go out and support local businesses. Will all depend on it.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Strangerland: Sorry wolfpack, I misunderstood your post when I wrote this. I think you and I were actually on the same page.

No worries. I will enjoy this moment of agreement.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

When will they open up travel to Japan for foreigners?

Hopefully, never.

I'm kidding. Mostly...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

alternatives to products manufactured in China.

Hilarious, you should do stand up.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Abe lifted his, but I am not lifting mine.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@serendipitous1

Yes. According to this article, the less-virulent "B-type" strain is the main coronvirus circulating in Japan/most of East Asia, unlike USA/Europe.

https://asia.nikkei.com/Opinion/Japan-s-coronavirus-response-is-flawed-but-it-works

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Uplifting or not, the Japanese allow themselves to be whipped and work like slaves (not all) and they need to start defending for themselves after people starting fighting against comedian Shinzo Abe. They need to understand their health comes first. Sure it will take a while for some to understand that, but stop being whipped by these companies so they don’t suffer Karoushi. Ouch

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The 3Cs still remain, as does Do Not Travel outside of prefecture, with some discussion of prefecture-to-prefecture passports. I’ll be isolating until I have been vaccinated. I do hope that being vaccinated/antibody-positive-tested becomes a requisite to international travel.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

We have to learn how to live with this virus as it will be around for a while and we can not continue to lock ourselves up although those that want to are free to do so.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

To some people, lifting the SOE means "Everything is back to normal and the virus has gone away or is under control." and the will start acting irresponsibly. I already see it happening. On the way to work this morning, I saw several people not wearing masks. One of them was standing so close to me that he kept stepping on my the heal of my shoes. BTW, this is on a 5:30AM train that's practically empty; he had no reason to be that close. I told him to back off and he looked at me as if I was the one who took the the crazy pill.

Business that have no business opening up (pachinko, bars, little tiny "yatais", where you basically sitting on tiny stools shoulder to shoulder with the person next you will all be opening.

> If you're worried about a second wave stay home and don't go to work because as you love to say health is more important.

For the rest of us, lets go have fun and get back to living.

This is precisely the type of self centered thinking that going to keep us in a perpetual loop. The virus doesn't choose who to infect. Even if I did what you suggest and stayed home while the rest of you act irresponsibly, I am not any more safer than before. You are still putting others at risk.

But I guess to some people, this really doesn't matter. Its me! me! me! I'm bored! I want to go out! I want to play pachinko! I want to go to the beach. Never for a moment do these people think I should wear a mask because I want this elderly person to feel safe when they are shopping for the essentials at the grocery store. Or I should practice social distancing on the train so that these students can feel safe commuting to school again getting a proper education. This virus really brings out the true color in some people, and you can really see the people who look out for others, and the people who only think about themselves!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@LastBroadcast

~ "Yes. According to this article, the less-virulent "B-type" strain is the main coronvirus circulating in Japan/most of East Asia, unlike USA/Europe.

> https://asia.nikkei.com/Opinion/Japan-s-coronavirus-response-is-flawed-but-it-works"

However, the death rate statistics are open for debate:

~ " Lack of testing and delayed numbers take blame for possible undercount Tokyo officially recorded 16 deaths from coronavirus in the five weeks starting Feb. 17, potentially undercounting by 50 to 60 deaths a week over that period.

> The Japanese capital may have suffered more than 200 excess fatalities from pneumonia and other causes early in the outbreak, possibly dwarfing the period's official coronavirus death count of 16. Even more deaths could have been undercounted in April, whose numbers will not come out until next month.

> The National Institute of Infectious Diseases tracks fatalities from flu-like illnesses by collecting data from public health departments around the country. The tallies include those who died from pneumonia. Excess fatalities are calculated by comparing these figures against baselines derived from past data.

> The newest numbers show 50 to 60 excess deaths a week for the five weeks starting Feb. 17, adding up to hundreds more fatalities than usual. Weekly excess deaths exceeding the margin of error come to 20 to 30. The NIID does not publish the raw numbers. Excess deaths also occurred in the second half of 2019. Flu season had come early in Tokyo, peaking in December...

> ...More COVID-19 fatalities may have been missed in April, with many of the dead never having been tested. Data on that month's deaths will not come out until late June. The delay is due partly to the slow penetration of electronic reporting. It takes a "certain amount of time" for local governments from cities on down to digitize written death notices to send to health departments, according to a representative at the central government's Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare...

> ...Global media outlets have said actual COVID-19 fatalities may exceed reported numbers by 50% to 60%, based on excess fatalities. "Weekly excess deaths could provide the most objective and comparable way of assessing the scale of the pandemic and formulating lessons to be learned," said an April letter in the British medical journal The Lancet..."

(Source: - https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/Coronavirus/Tokyo-s-excess-deaths-far-higher-than-COVID-19-count-data-shows )

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Paul

Thanks for this information....definitely is an eye opener and explains a lot!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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