Tokyo may raise coronavirus alert as travel campaign comes under fire

Tokyo is considering raising its alert for coronavirus infections to the highest of four levels, said officials on Wednesday, after a spike in cases to record numbers in the Japanese capital.

Fearing a second wave of infections spreading from the capital, local municipalities and opposition lawmakers have also urged the central government to suspend a major campaign aimed at boosting domestic tourism.

Economy minister Yasutoshi Nishimura, said on Wednesday that the government would proceed with the so-called ‘Go-To’ travel aid campaign, which includes offers such as discounts for shopping and food, but move cautiously.

“Obviously we will consider the thoughts of many of our people, while monitoring the situation ahead,” said Nishimura.

In the country, daily coronavirus cases exceed 200 in four of the last six days, reaching a high of 243 cases last Friday as testing among workers in the metropolis’s red-light district turned up infections among young people in their 20s and 30s.

Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike confirmed that Tokyo would hold a “monitoring” meeting with experts on Wednesday, to discuss the recent rise in cases.



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