PCR Tests Eyed for All U.S. Military Personnel Entering Japan

Politics

Tokyo, July 17 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese and U.S. governments are considering obliging all U.S. military personnel entering Japan to undergo polymerase chain reaction tests for the novel coronavirus, Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono said Friday.

The measure is under consideration following the spread of infections among people related to U.S. bases in Japan. But the test results will not be released to the public due to the Japan-U.S. status of forces agreement.

The mandatory PCR tests, planned for U.S. troops assigned to bases in Japan and civilian base workers, and their family members, will be conducted right before they leave the United States and soon after they enter Japan.

Currently, U.S. military-related people directly entering U.S. bases in Japan aboard military aircraft and chartered planes spend a two-week quarantine period before and after the flights.

However, they do not take PCR tests unless they have fever or other symptoms. This is because U.S. military personnel are exempted from Japanese laws related to passports and visas under Article 9 of the bilateral agreement.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press