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Japan declares nationwide state of emergency due to escalating coronavirus cases

The nationwide state of emergency will last until May 6

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Prime Minister Shinzo Abe first declared a state of emergency on April 7 for Tokyo, Osaka and five other prefectures. However, the number of Covid-19 coronavirus cases continues to spike. It seems as if the emergency declaration came too late – The Japan Times reported that coronavirus cases have doubled in the week since the declaration, with 70 percent of new cases located in the prefectures covered by the state of emergency – Tokyo, Osaka, Chiba, Saitama, Kanagawa, Hyogo and Fukuoka. 

Now the state of emergency has been expanded nationwide in a bid to limit travel across prefectures and curb the spread of the virus. However, as per the limitations of the law in Japan, this is not a lockdown. This emergency declaration strongly urges non-essential businesses to close and for residents to stay in their homes, only going out when absolutely necessary.

The nationwide state of emergency will last through Golden Week until May 6. 

This is a developing story and the article will be updated as more details are announced.

Follow live updates on the Covid-19 coronavirus situation in Tokyo and Japan here.

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