So tourists, Japanese and foreign residents coming (back) to Japan will be in the same airplane, coming from the same ‘blue’ place, with the same vaccination and negative pcr tests, into a country where the virus is endemic, but the tourists need to have different rules because…?
15 ( +18 / -3 )
Japan will contribute its strategy that has proven successful : close bars at 8pm (probably not something to worry about in North Korea), do nothing else, don’t ask don’t test.
1 ( +7 / -6 )
« Juntendo University said in 2018 that it had raised the bar for women in the exams in order to "narrow the gap with male students" »
« Tokyo Medical University, admitted it had systematically lowered the scores of female applicants to keep women in the student body at around 30 percent »
The Japanese idea of narrowing the gap between male and female students is interesting. Keep less prepared men, in higher percentage.
4 ( +7 / -3 )
@fish10 as long as you have a pcr test with the required information the government form can just be attached and signed by anyone human or animal. I had mine signed by a Turkish Airlines staff because despite the PCR in English from a French hospital printed and stamped and signed by the doctor she said “they only care about the government form signed”. The time before, coming from a different country, I had gone through the pain of visiting the Japanese embassy with my government-stamped PCR in English with QR coda and all and they just attached to it the Japanese government form ticking the corresponding cases and writing ‘yes it’s a government issued PCR’ in Japanese. Last time I left on a Sunday and the embassy being closed before I got the PCR results I just printed the Japanese form, ticked the right cases and signed it myself to ‘certify’ it said what it said.
The important thing is the PCR itself, although of course Japanese don’t think the same or they would get tested regularly too, since the virus is abundantly present here.
-4 ( +2 / -6 )
“Japan effectively imposed an entry ban on nonresident foreign nationals in late November”
Never tired of reminding it: Japan imposed an entry ban on nonresident in February 2020, including seven months in which it was applied to residents as well, and with the exception of three weeks in November 2021 (in theory, but in practice it made no difference because nobody could receive the visa and enter the country in that short period of time). It is now and by far the longest running ban on foreigners outside China/North Korea, only one in the G7, and wildly unjustified when there have been 50,000+ positives per day in the country for months now, and with a testing limited capacity (or will).
-2 ( +5 / -7 )
“Since late November, only a fraction of nonresident foreigners wishing to enter Japan had been granted entry as exceptions.”
Not since late November: since February 2020.
Do you think 400,000 people who are eligible to live here just cumulated in a couple of months?
Aside for a window of three weeks last November, the ban has been in place for two full years, and just to let in all those who have already the right to enter Japan it will take another full year.
2 ( +14 / -12 )
Also, in my plane today there were four (4) foreigners out of 243 passengers, which makes the Japanese coming back from abroad 239. Whatever you think about the two years of border limitations, I can tell you the variants didn’t enter with a foreign traveler.
8 ( +20 / -12 )
Writing this from Haneda, March 1. Process improved a lot in terms of speed, not because anything changed in the content of the checks (ok, no more hanko but just a pen check, a major improvement) but because of logistics and organization having adapted with experience. Still a hundred checks.
The surreal thing is that now one is better off coming from a country with hundreds if thousands omicron cases (3 days at home) than from a country where there’s not enough omicron cases (7 days at home, can be shortened by taking a PCR on day 3). So coming from a country that manages better its pandemic response is a disadvantage.
Needless to say, the vaccination Catch-22 is there: you can skip quarantine if you have the 3rd shot, but you can’t have the third shot if you live in Japan and your second shot was less than 6 months ago.
4 ( +15 / -11 )
@Ossan Korea ranks 102 in the Global Gender Gap report, Japan…120.
-4 ( +8 / -12 )
No wonder the government will appeal, as some people were there at the time the law was still enforced and if it was for them, it still would be…Deputy Prime Minister, how are you?
0 ( +1 / -1 )
“Many of the Japanese public, however, are supportive of the tight border controls as they think troubles such as the pandemic come from outside their island nation. “
Many children under 9 year old believe the presents under the tree are brought by Santa and the magic raindeers. Doesn’t make it real.
3 ( +27 / -24 )
« Japan has banned entries by foreigners in principle since Nov 30 »
You keep writing it, I keep correcting it: Japan has banned entries of foreigners since February 2020, including to its permanent residents during the first seven months, for a total of now two full years except for 25 days between November 7 and November 30, during which it has actually seen barely any new entry because the time was not enough to resume issuance of eligibility certificates and visa.
Sorry but saying Japan has banned foreigners for two months when it’s actually two years makes those of us who protest the incredible stupidity of the situation look silly.
-2 ( +9 / -11 )
@fighto « a significant proportion of those entering will have the virus. This is fact - we are seeing this around the world with the nations that are open. »
Not even close to true, aside from being wildly xenophobic: the totality of those entering will have tested negative before departure, and a ridiculously small percentage of them will test positive on arrival and be immediately isolated. If your worry is the weight of maybe what, 10? 100? people per year who out of those few who will test positive will actually need to use the Japanese health system, just ask for pre-departure insurance covering covid costs. And remember that either people are paying into the health system, and then they obviously can use it with the same conditions as Japanese, or they are not, and then they already are paying the full costs anyway.
3 ( +7 / -4 )
« Makoto Shimoaraiso, a cabinet official working on Japan's COVID-19 response, said the situation is painful but he asked for patience, noting much higher infection levels overseas.»
Japanese love to be treated like spoiled delusional children. Overseas higher levels of infection are the direct consequence of much, much higher levels of testing. Also I don’t hear the Japanese praising say, Rwanda for the much lower levels of infection, and yet they test more in proportion to the population, and have no quarantine. As repeatedly proven by contact tracing and, you know, science - especially by neighboring Korea with highly comparable situation overall - foreign imported cases don’t represent more than 3% of total cases, and of that 3% two thirds are returning citizens and all of them are identified and isolated, so contributing close to zero to the spread. Japan can do whatever it wants, but please know this one is just stupid.
7 ( +11 / -4 )
« They need to learn from the Japanese youth programs (i.e. J league academies and some of the high schools here have top notch football programs) as opposed to naturalising Brazilian players (they have 3 in their team right now) »
yeah it’s not like Wagner Lopes (1998), Alex Santos (2002, 2006) and Tulio Tanaka (2006) were naturalised and played the World Cup for Japan - which I am totally fine with.
1 ( +2 / -1 )
« Recordings obtained by the AP also showed that Kasai, who heads a vast region that includes China and Japan, made derogatory remarks about his staff based on nationality during meetings.
Kasai denied the allegations. »
Does Mr Kasai know what a recording is ? Gotcha, man.
10 ( +13 / -3 )
I don’t think the delays in following science are intentional to keep their pride, I think it just takes time to translate, print and fax all the research to the grandpas who take the decisions.
7 ( +13 / -6 )
« Japan has banned entries by foreigners in principle since Nov. 30 »
I will never get tired of reminding ourselves and the lazy journalists who write here that no, Japan has not banned entries since Nov.30.
Japan has banned entries since February 2020, a ban that applied to foreign residents as well for seven months, and had restarted issuing visa and certificates of eligibility on Nov.5, 2021, before shutting down again on Nov.30. So a more correct way of describing the situation would be:
« Japan has banned entries by foreigners since February 2020, two full years including seven months in which not even permanent residents could come back, with the exception of 24 days in which almost no student or perspective foreign resident managed to enter the country anyway because priority was given to short term businesses travelers and others couldn’t get their visa before the country closed again »
15 ( +23 / -8 )
It was an exceptional match. As in they made exceptions to the border control rules (the exceptions that they cannot make for families reuniting, workers, students who would all happily quarantine). By role in the squad, country they returned from, and corresponding quarantine they skipped:
Itakura (Germany, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Endo (Germany, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Ito (Belgium, 10 days home quarantine)
Tanaka (Germany, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Morita (Portugal, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Minamino (UK, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Maeda (UK, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Kubo (Spain, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Haraguchi (Germany, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Nakayama (Netherlands, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Doan (Netherlands, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Schmidt (Belgium, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Shibasaki (Spain, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Ueda (France, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
Kawashima (France, 6 days at government designated facility + 4 days home quarantine)
And of course, the full China national team.
7 ( +9 / -2 )
@Peter14 the problem is that Mr Kasai literally represents his country, which lobbied for his election, and he is unfortunately very representative of his government’s views on the matter. There’s nothing individual about it.
2 ( +9 / -7 )
what shocks me the most is actually this comment: "I couldn't tell anyone about my cancer because I was afraid of being discriminated against”.
Says a lot.
8 ( +12 / -4 )
I like the moment of “what-about” journalism mentioning completely different cases concerning allegations of sexual abuse in DR Congo. When you have to try justifying your bad behavior as less shocking by bringing up DR Congo, you know you are not exactly giving a shining example of yourself.
5 ( +12 / -7 )
44,692 Positive cases nationwide…
If all the people who entered Japan today, plus all the people who entered Japan yesterday, but really absolutely all of them, for some magical reason tested positive despite all of them having tested negative within the previous 72 hours and were left out in the wild taking public transportation, going to the office and schools and onsen etc…it would still be less cases than today’s community spread. But thank god those border measures are protecting us, the people of Japan approve the strong Prime Minister’s decision huhuuu
5 ( +10 / -5 )
@bronco hotel quarantine for non residents (and soon to be residents to start with, for instance) can be at the charge of the travelers and their inviting institutions. Quarantine hotels are full because of surreal 10-days stays for fully vaccinated, 3-4 times negative travelers just because they come from a country that had the omicron peak almost three months ago and is now seeing less cases than Japan. If everyone else in the world (except China and North Korea) is doing differently, it’s starting to look very much like the guy driving in the opposite direction on the highway and screaming « everybody drives like crazy! »
-4 ( +2 / -6 )
@CaptDingleheimer yes in theory they are, although in my two experiences none of the Japanese citizens who were in my same plane from the beginning of the trip (meaning the same quarantine applies) were then in the CSI-plastic-covered bus to the quarantine hotel. None.
Optimistic me thinks they just had different hotels (simple comfort discrimination, maybe even in my favor); the pessimistic me thinks they were considered by the quarantine officer - who can take any decision - as free to quarantine home (magical thinking discrimination).
The only two Japanese citizens that on one occasion were waiting with the rest of us foreigners before passport control, to be then sent to a quarantine hotel, suddenly disappeared in a different direction with the quarantine officer never to be seen again. One of them we actually saw outside while waiting for the bus, and he was walking alone (towards the train, if we want to say it all).
I have myself almost made it straight home once despite the clear rule (I was coming from a country that didn’t require hotel quarantine but had been to one that did, 13 days earlier when the threshold was 14 not to consider it…): it was thanks to the negotiation by my Japanese ex wife over the phone with the quarantine officer, so I am assuming that some negotiations, conducted directly by Japanese citizens on the spot, might go better than mine and finally no, not everyone spends 3-6-10 days in a two per two room with loud speakers announcing lunch is hanging on the door handle.
-2 ( +3 / -5 )
« The anti-coronavirus entry ban has been in place since Nov. 30 »
Ahah you wish…But let’s do some real journalism: the entry ban has been in place since February 2020, including seven months of complete ban to all foreigners including permanent residents, and was lifted for half a hour mid November 2021 - also after Keidanren pressure - before coming again into effectiveness less than two weeks later, for a total of almost two full years now.
11 ( +17 / -6 )
Japan: 146 deaths per million inhabitants. No foreigners except residents allowed for two years and counting.
Korea: 125 deaths per million inhabitants. Foreigners and citizens alike follow the same quarantine regime when entering, currently only 11 countries are banned and in two years there has been almost no restrictions aside from rigid quarantine (that went from 14 to 10 and soon 7 days).
My point about testing was that tracing demonstrated that imported cases by foreigners count for close to zero (which is intuitive given that most people living in a country are usually its citizens), and that they are identified at the airport and isolated and extremely rarely generating clusters or spreading. Extremely rarely.
One can have low mortality rates without closing the country for two years, bragging about special manners and dna, pointing fingers at foreigners and separating elevators in hotels.
6 ( +9 / -3 )
Fantastic, now it’s basically okay to think you might have the virus, test positive at a rapid test but for ‘cultural reasons’ go around as if nothing happened. BUT it’s not ok to let foreigners with three to five negative PCR tests in.
In the meantime in Korea, based on preparedness plans made before the spike of omicron relying on science, new measures are going to be in place:
Yes, shortening the quarantine period from 10 to 7 days, and focusing resources - including PCR tests - on elderly and at risk groups.
Sure, they still have a surreal ban on 11 African countries that smells ignorance, but that’s 184 countries less than Japan.
Borders? Wide open, with strict quarantine regularly shortening according to scientific data. Percentage of cases per day on total cases:
local transmission: 96%
imported cases by returning Koreans: 3%
imported cases by foreigners: 1% (obviously all immediately isolated)
Testing and tracing systematically from the beginning helped understanding that blaming foreigners is the proverbial finger that Japan looks at, while others try to deal with the 99% moon the finger is pointing at.
0 ( +7 / -7 )
I hope protesters will switch strategy, from asking to get into Japan to asking their own governments to apply reciprocity.
When Japanese new entries will be banned by 195 countries until reciprocal arrangements are made, being isolated both ways and not just incoming, we will hear what Japan consider fair. We are all someone else’s foreigners.
-2 ( +6 / -8 )
Kihara said Japan will maintain its entry ban on nonresident foreign nationals into Japan until the end of February as planned. "The infection situations regarding Omicron are clearly different in Japan and abroad," he said.
True, France for instance is prolonging the obligation for companies to let their workers work from home at least three days per week, while Japan trains are packed but the government bans alcohol after 8pm and banned foreigners after February 2020, both highly scientific measures of undoubted efficacy. The record cases, rapid spike, low hospitalization rates, are all exactly the same as everywhere with omicron. Wake up Japan, you are not special, just more racist!
-5 ( +3 / -8 )