Japanese PM Shinzo Abe lifts nationwide coronavirus lockdown


Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe lifted the state of emergency imposed to combat the coronavirus in Tokyo and remaining four other areas, thus ending nationwide restrictions.

Experts on a government-commissioned panel approved the lifting of the emergency in Tokyo, neighbouring Kanagawa, Chiba and Saitama prefectures, and in Hokkaido to the north, which had more cases and remained under the emergency declaration after it was removed in most of Japan earlier this month.

Japan has approximately 16,000 confirmed cases and 850 deaths and has managed to contain large outbreaks as witnessed in the US and parts of Europe, despite imposing softer restrictions.

The emergency was declared on 7th April in several parts of Japan, including Tokyo, and was extended to the rest of the country later that month.