Japan Governors Seek Restraints on Travel in Summer


Tokyo, Aug. 1 (Jiji Press)--The National Governors' Association at a videoconference Sunday called on the Japanese government to ask the public to avoid summer holiday travel across prefectural borders in principle, including trips to their parents' homes during the "bon" period in mid-August, to help prevent a further spread of the novel coronavirus in the country.

The association referred to a study on how to implement stronger regimes such as lockdown in order to increase the efficacy of infection prevention measures.

"We are at a critical juncture where we must stop the current explosive spread of infections at any cost," Kamon Iizumi, governor of Tokushima Prefecture, western Japan, and head of the association, said at the start of the videoconference of the group of prefectural governors.

In a set of proposal compiled at the remote meeting, the association cited a rapid resurgence in coronavirus infection cases blamed on the highly contagious delta variant and said that "we must not waste any time in containing the fifth wave of infections" as the flows of people will increase toward the culmination of the summer holiday season. The group called on the national government to work with prefectural governments on asking citizens to refrain from homecoming travel and trips to and from areas with spikes in coronavirus infections.

As to binding measures, Shuichi Abe, governor of Nagano Prefecture, central Japan, said at the videoconference, "I want the national government to seriously consider a legal framework, including on lockdown-like restrictions on movements."

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Jiji Press