Updated Japan Covid Restrictions—As a result of the coronavirus outbreak in Tokyo and other locations, Japan plans to reduce border controls and increase infection control measures to prevent the spread of the virus.
According to media sources, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida plans to increase the daily entry limit from the current 5,000 to 7,000, while students will be excused and treated separately.
It would extend a recent loosening of the country’s stringent border controls that allowed more students and foreign employees into the country, despite protests from business leaders and educators.
At 7:00 p.m. local time, Kishida will announce the new measures, as well as an extended coronavirus quasi-emergency (1000 GMT).
Around 150,000 international students and workers have been barred from entering Japan since 2020, triggering fears of a labor shortage and damage to Japan’s international reputation. The country is rapidly aging and is in critical need of workers.
The Omicron variety of COVID-19 continues to put hospitals under strain, even as the number of new coronavirus infections drops. NHK reported 4,856 deaths in February, making it the bloodiest month of the pandemic to date.
Hirokazu Matsuno, Japan’s chief cabinet secretary, said that the central government had received requests from five prefectures, including Kyoto and Osaka in western Japan, to extend infection control measures slated to expire Sunday.
According to local media, Tokyo is poised to ask for a two-to-three-week extension of measures that include shortened restaurant hours and bans on alcohol sales.
Kishida is also expected to discuss Russia’s invasion of Ukraine during his speech. The United States, the European Union, and other countries have imposed sanctions on Russia. Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida stated that his government is prepared to take in Ukrainian refugees on Wednesday.
As a separate matter, One hundred refugee families from Ukraine will be taken in by Pan Pacific International, formerly Don Quijote Holdings. It gave no further information.
Refugees from Ukraine Welcome Amidst Updated Japan Covid Restrictions
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said Wednesday that Japan plans to accept migrants fleeing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine at an early date.
People fleeing Ukraine who has family or friends in Japan will be given priority for entry into the country by the authorities. The door may be open to those who do not, Kishida remarked.
In Tokyo on March 2, 2022, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida addressed the media. After speaking by phone with German and Polish leaders, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said, “Japan will allow in refugees who have fled Ukraine to third countries as we aim to show our sympathy with the people of Ukraine while the world is at a vital moment.”
“The situation in Ukraine is serious, and the number of refugees is rapidly increasing. To deal with this crisis as quickly as possible, we are already making plans, “he stated.
In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Japan relaxed some of its border regulations, but it hasn’t lifted its daily quota of 5,000 foreigners, including Japanese nationals.
According to Kishida, the daily quota will not apply to Ukrainian refugees.
As a result of Russian aggression in Ukraine, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees estimates that approximately 870,000 people have been displaced.
Another nearby country that has taken in refugees like these is Poland. Kishida informed Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki about Japan’s plans to admit such people during their phone conversation.
U.S., European Union, and Japanese leaders have agreed to prolong aid to Ukraine and its refugees and impose “serious costs and repercussions” on Russia for its actions.
According to a statement, Japan has agreed to donate $100 million in humanitarian aid to Ukraine through international organizations.
Several countries have voiced their support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in the wake of Russian aggression, and major powers have joined forces to impose economic penalties on Russia.
A cease-fire between Russia and Ukraine may not be possible as Russian troops have intensified their attacks on Ukraine. According to Russian media, the second round of negotiations is scheduled for Wednesday night.
Since Russia violated international law prohibiting force, Japan has remained steadfast. Because of China’s forceful territorial claims and military expansion, Tokyo is concerned about the implications for Asia.
During their phone call, Kishida and German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier agreed that their countries, which share universal values such as freedom, democracy, and the rule of law, have “an increasingly important” role to play in the world amid the Ukrainian crisis, the Japanese Foreign Ministry said.
Germany currently holds the rotating presidency of the Group of Seven nations, and the following year it will be taken up by the Japanese.
Russia’s military has threatened to bomb Ukrainian communications and intelligence facilities in Kyiv and has warned neighboring residents to flee.
At least five people were killed on Tuesday when Russian forces fired on the central television tower in the Ukrainian capital, Mayor Oleksandr Turchynov says.
Japan has chosen to close its embassy in Kyiv for the time being and move its operations to a liaison office in Lviv, Ukraine’s westernmost city. The ministry says the office will assist Japanese nationals in Ukraine and those who seek to leave.
The embassy’s operations have been scaled back since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began last week. Despite the current political situation, the Japanese Ambassador to Ukraine, Kuninori Matsuda, and others remain in Ukraine.
About 120 Japanese nationals were in Ukraine as of February 27. Since Japan’s government has requested that they leave, it has secured an aircraft to fly them out of Poland and into another nation.
There is a liaison office in Rzeszow, Poland, to assist Japanese citizens fleeing the Ukrainian border.
According to the Japanese Foreign Ministry, Kishida requested assistance from Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki in evacuating the Japanese people, and Morawiecki vowed to collaborate as much as possible.
Japan has already issued a travel alert for the entire country of Ukraine.
When asked about the Ukraine Embassy’s recruitment of foreign military recruits in Tokyo on Wednesday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno advised that Japanese citizens refrain from traveling to Ukraine “regardless of motive.”