The Japanese government is poised to declare a state of emergency for Tokyo, Hyogo and Osaka as they struggle against a fourth wave of COVID-19.
Osaka, Tokyo and eight other prefectures are already under quasi-states of emergency – restricting business and restaurant hours.
Tokyo’s governor will request an emergency period from April 29 to May 9.
The request has been accepted by the International Olympic Committee but flagged it was unrelated to the July Games.
“Tokyo continues to be the best prepared Olympic city ever, and this was underlined by information we got the organising committee and from the coordination commission which are closely cooperating and at full speed to prepare these games which are approaching very, very fast,” the committee’s president Thomas Bach said.
Tokyo recorded 843 new coronavirus infections yesterday.