Here are the latest updates from Japan and beyond on the coronavirus outbreak:
As of 11 p.m., Thursday, June 17
- Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Thursday expressed his intent to hold this summer's Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics with spectators, with a decision to be finalized in forthcoming talks among organizers based on the Japanese government's spectator cap for large events.
- Athletes likely to compete for Japan in the upcoming Tokyo Paralympics began receiving coronavirus vaccinations on Thursday, the Japan Paralympic Committee said.
- Japan's government will begin COVID-19 vaccinations for foreign embassy officials in the country as early as Monday, as their local municipalities may not be able to provide the vaccine in time for the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics starting July 23, diplomatic sources said Thursday.
- The Japanese government decided Thursday to lift the COVID-19 state of emergency across most prefectures, while keeping some restrictions in place amid concern about a rebound in infections ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.
- Japan's state-run mass COVID-19 inoculation centers started administering vaccine to people aged 18 or older Thursday, extending vaccinations beyond those aged 65 or over as many slots at the centers remain vacant.
- The organizing committee of the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics will give up on selling any more tickets for this summer's games, an official with knowledge of the matter said Thursday.
- Japan plans to start accepting applications for so-called vaccine passports from mid-July at the earliest as more activities open up to vaccinated individuals around the world, according to government sources.
- A plane carrying 1 million coronavirus virus vaccine doses donated by Japan arrived in Vietnam's capital Hanoi on Wednesday night, with the country's health minister expressing gratitude for the goodwill gesture.
- The Japanese government is considering setting a cap of 10,000 spectators at the venues of the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics as a COVID-19 precaution, sources with knowledge of the matter said Wednesday.
As of 11 p.m., Wednesday, June 16
- The Japanese government plans to end the COVID-19 state of emergency covering Tokyo and eight other prefectures on Sunday as scheduled, while Okinawa will remain under the restrictions until mid-July, sources with knowledge of the matter said Wednesday.
- Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Wednesday set the goal of fully reopening the country to foreign visitors within 120 days to pave the way for economic recovery, despite worries over the risk of new coronavirus infections.
- The estimated number of foreign visitors to Japan in May was down 99.6 percent from the pre-pandemic year of 2019 as a result of tougher travel restrictions to prevent the spread of highly contagious coronavirus variants, government data showed Wednesday.
- Japan's parliament wrapped up a 150-day ordinary session on Wednesday after the ruling coalition rejected calls from the opposition for a three-month extension to respond to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
- Japan's exports in May jumped 49.6 percent from a year ago to post the sharpest rise in over four decades, with their rebound from a coronavirus pandemic-induced downturn driven by solid demand for cars and auto parts, government data showed Wednesday.
Useful resources for foreign residents and visitors in Japan
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government's "Tokyo Coronavirus Support Center for Foreign Residents (TOCOS)" multilingual hotline
- Available in Simple Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Nepali, Indonesian, Tagalog, Thai, Portuguese, Spanish, French, Khmer, and Burmese, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays except national holidays.
0120-296-004 (toll free)
- AMDA Medical Information Center's "Multilingual Consultation Service"
- Available in Simple Japanese and English, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays. Also available in Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese on designated weekdays. Check schedule here.
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government's COVID-19 info
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government hotline
- Available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese, 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. (including weekends and holidays)
- Available via fax for those with hearing impairments
- Japan National Tourism Organization's "Guide for when you are feeling ill"
- Multilingual clinic/hospital search available in English, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese
- JNTO's "Japan Visitor Hotline"
- Available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese 24 hours a day
+81-50-3816-2787 (from overseas)
- Japan's health ministry hotline
- Available in Japanese only, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- World Health Organization's "Q&A on coronaviruses"