(TOKYO) #Coronavirus Report: Japan has declared a third #COVID19 related state of emergency for the capital and three western prefectures, just three months ahead of the Olympics which is due to start #AceNewsDesk report

#AceHealthReport – Apr.24: Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga announced the emergency for Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto and Hyogo from April 25 through May 11, as the coronavirus variant first identified in the UK spreads in the four prefectures:

#CoronavirusNewsDesk – Japan declares third COVID-19 state of emergency, just three months before Olympics as the U.K. variant spreads into Tokyo and 4-prefectures’

Posted Yesterday at 9:25pm, updated 9h ago

A Japanese man holding up a sign which says "Stay Home"
Pandemic prevention measures such as staying at home and wearing masks remain optional.(Reuters: Issei Kato)

Daily infections in Japan briefly dipped in March, but have since risen to exceed 5,000 by Wednesday: Osaka recorded 1,162 new COVID-19 cases Friday, while Tokyo had 759.

Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games will be like no other, with athletes required to wear a mask at all times unless they are eating or sleeping and organisers wanting people to show their support by only clapping, not by chanting or singing.Read more

The step is largely intended to be “short and intensive” to stop people from traveling and spreading the virus during Japan’s “Golden Week” holidays, from late April through the first week of May, Mr Suga said.

“I sincerely apologise for causing trouble for many people again,” said Mr Suga, who earlier had pledged to do his utmost to prevent a third emergency.

This latest state of emergency comes only a month after an earlier emergency ended in the Tokyo area.

Experts, municipal leaders call for stronger prevention measures

A crowded restaurant in Tokyo with people outside in face masks
Restaurants are obliged to operate with shorterned hours under the state of emergency.(ABC News: Jake Sturmer)

Japan, which has had about half a million cases and 10,000 deaths, has not enforced lockdowns.

Mask-wearing, staying home and other COVID-safe measures for the public remain non-mandatory, and experts worry if they will be followed.

The state of emergency now allows prefectural governors to issue binding orders for businesses to shorten hours or close in exchange for daily compensation of up to 200,000 yen ($2,393), while imposing fines of up to 300,000 yen ($3,589) for violators.

There are also shutdown requirements for bars, department stores, shopping centres, theme parks, theatres and museums.

Schools will stay open, but universities are asked to return to online classes.

But people are becoming impatient and less cooperative and have largely ignored the ongoing measures as infections have accelerated.

This has prompted experts and local leaders to urgently call for tougher steps. 

Osaka Governor Hirofumi Yoshimura, who on Tuesday requested the emergency, said the semi-emergency measures were not working and hospitals were overflowing with patients.

COVID-19 treatment is largely limited to a handful of public-run hospitals, while many small private institutions are not assisting or even prepared to mobilise for infectious diseases.

The Japanese Government has also been criticised for a slow vaccine rollout, with only a tiny fraction of the population innoculated.

Mr Suga said he would ensure enough vaccines are delivered to local municipalities so all of the country’s 36 million senior citizens can receive their second shots by the end of July — a month behind an earlier schedule.

Suga says IOC is the reason why the Olympics is still going ahead

A person in a white t-shirt bearing the Tokyo Olympics logo holding the golden Olympic torch
Japan has already postponed its Olympics by a year because of the pandemic.(AP: Thanassis Stavrakis)

The May 11 deadline for the latest round of emergency measures occurs ahead of an expected visit by International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, triggering speculation that the government is prioritsing the Olympic schedule over people’s health.

Mr Suga said Japan had no choice but to follow the IOC decision to hold the games.

“The IOC has the authority to decide and the IOC has already decided to hold the Tokyo Olympics,” Mr Suga said.

“We aim to hold the games while taking strong measures to protect people’s lives from the further spread of infections.”

Yoshihide Suga in a suit and tie wearing a white mask speaks infront of microphones
Mr Suga had earlier tried to prevent another state of emergency.(AP: Koji Sasahara)

Mr Suga has been reluctant to hurt the already pandemic-damaged economy and faced criticism for being slow to take virus measures.

Japan’s inoculation campaign lags behind many countries, with imported vaccines in short supply while its attempts to develop its own vaccines are still in the early stages.

Inoculations started in mid-February but progress has been slow amid shortages of vaccines and healthcare workers.

The rapid increase in patients flooding hospitals has raised concerns of a further staff shortage and delay in vaccinations.

AP

#AceHealthDesk report ………Published: Apr.24: 2021:

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#coronavirus, #covid19, #health, #japan, #olympics, #tokyo

‘ Self-Defence Forces of `Japan ‘ will Launch Squad to fight Cyber-Attacks ‘

#AceSecurityNews – JAPAN – March 25 – The Self-Defence Forces of Japan will launch on Wednesday the first squad to fight cyber-attacks on the country’s most important information resources, Itar-Tass – reported.

Ninety experts are expected to join the new department at the first stage.

In 2015, a special cyber security centre will be established.

A week ago, Tokyo faced a full-on cyber-attack across government departments in a drill aimed at bolstering national security as the country gears up to host the 2020 Olympics, Reuters said.

#ANS2014

#2020, #cyber-attack, #itar-tass, #japan, #olympics, #reuters, #tokyo

#Sochi : ” UN Condemns Attacks on LGBT Community ahead of Olympics”

#AceWorldNews says UN chief condemns attacks on the LGBT community ahead of Olympics
The UN chief, Ban Ki-moon, has used a speech ahead of the Winter Olympics in Sochi to condemn attacks on the LGBT community, the Guardian reported.

Addressing the IOC, the UN secretary-general highlighted the fact that the theme of the UN’s human rights day last December was “sport comes out against homophobia.” Speaking to reporters after his address, Ban said he appreciated the assurances of President Vladimir Putin that “there will be no discrimination and that people with different sexual orientation are welcome to compete and enjoy this Olympic Games.”

#humanrights, #ban-ki-moon, #guardian, #ioc, #lgbt, #olympics, #president-vladimir-putin, #sochi, #un, #winter-olympic-games

Russia Sochi: "Putin Assures Group of International Journalist's that Athlete's, Spectator's and LGBT are Welcome in Russia"

#AceWorldNews says according to latest RT News President Vladimir Putin has reassured a group of international journalists that athletes and spectators would have no problems at the Sochi Olympics in a discussion dominated by questions on Russia’s “gay propaganda” law and security.

While visiting Sochi ahead of the Winter Games, the Russian president shared his vision of the coming Olympics with journalists from America’s ABC News, Britain’s BBC, China’s CCTV, and the IOC’s own Around the Rings agency, as well as with Russia’s Channel One and Rossiya-1 TV channels.

“None of the guests of the Sochi Olympics will have any problems,” Putin said.

Despite Putin saying that the Olympics were meant to “depoliticize the most pressing international issues,” the majority of questions he had to answer dealt with politics, with much of the interview time being devoted to dispelling fears that LGBT visitors to Sochi would face any discrimination.

Putin reiterated that LGBT community representatives were absolutely welcome in Russia.

Full Interview from the Kremlin: http://kremlin.ru/news/20080

#bbc, #cctv, #ioc, #lgbt, #olympics, #president-vladimir-putin, #rossiya-1-tv, #rt-news, #sochi, #winter-games

#AceWorldNews says Russian lawmakers have introduced a new…

#AceWorldNews says Russian lawmakers have introduced a new bill that, once passed, would increase the punishment for terrorist activities to life in prison.

The sponsors of the bill also aim to increase the punishment for a number of terrorist related activities from 10 to 20 years in prison. Some of the proposed amendments to the articles of the Criminal Code will alter the punishment to life imprisonment. Presently, Russian law provides that the acts of terrorism are punished with up to 20 years in prison only if they cause the loss of human life or involve the use of nuclear or radioactive materials and devices.

The new amendments introduce sentences of up to 20 years or even life sentences for “organizing and committing crimes of a terrorist nature and for organizing financial terrorism,” Irina Yarovaya, the head of the Duma Security Committee, told the Interfax news agency.The MP said she expected the Duma to consider the new amendments “as a priority,” as the country has witnessed a number of terrorist attacks.

Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker Andrey Lugovoy told Ria Novosti, that the proposed amendments will not only toughen the punishment for those committing terrorist acts, but would also seek tougher sentences for people involved in their preparation and training, as well as propaganda of such extremist activities.

Lugovoy added that the bill proposes to exclude any possibility of softer punishment for a terrorist crime, such as a suspended sentence. The statute of limitations will not apply to terrorist crimes.

Duma deputies also seek to expand the mandate of the FSB, the Russian security service, to allow it not only to check identity documents, but also to carry out searches on suspected citizens and vehicles.

“Now we are increasing their powers and they will be able to not only check documents but also to search people and to inspect vehicles,” Lugovoy said.

To combat the financing of terrorism, lawmakers seek to reduce the sum of one-time money transfers using internet payment systems, from 40 thousand rubles to one thousand, and also seek to introduce necessary ID checks at the time of the transaction for both the sender and the receiver of the funds.

New responsibilities for Internet providers:

Another set of amendments concerns the federal law on information and data protection. It obliges all companies and private persons that organize the spreading of information or data exchange between users on the internet to keep logs of all user activities for six months, and provide the information to law enforcers in a way described by federal laws.

In December, two suicide bombings in a railway station and a trolley bus in the southern city of Volgograd killed 34 people. Three police officers were killed in a car bombing in December in the resort city of Pyatigorsk.

Ahead of February’s Winter Olympics a number of preventative terrorism measures have been introduced to protect spectators in Sochi. Starting last Saturday, airport passengers have also been banned from having any type of liquids in their carry-on luggage.

To provide security for spectators, Russia will deploy surveillance drones, which will be used for the first time at the Olympics in Sochi. In addition, two sonar systems to detect submarines and protect the Olympics from a seaborne terror attack will be used.

More than 40,000 police will be on duty, and more than 5,000 surveillance cameras installed across the city to help the counter-terrorism effort.

“All security is in place. And I want to assure you that despite the global threat of terrorism, here in Sochi everybody will be protected,” the head of the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee, Dmitry Chernyshenko, told RT.

#duma, #lawmakers, #olympics, #russian, #sochi, #terrorist-attacks

The Real Cost To People Of The Olympics

The Evening Standard profiles residents on the Carpenters Estate in Stratford who fear they will be relocated after the London Olympics. The paper notes that Newham Council plans to demolish the estate and sell it to developers to regenerate the area.

#carpenters-estate, #developers, #newham-council, #olympics

2012 Reasons To Add This Extension – The Olympics Blocker

2012 Reasons To Add This Extension – The Olympics Blocker

Had enough of all that Olympics and need a rest! Then add an extension called ” Olwimpics” and block keywords! Should suit LOCOG as they wanted to expunge certain words from our life,in favour of their profits! Also available for Chrome, Firefox and Safari! 

There are 2012 reasons to add this extension!    

Olwimpics, the Olympics Blocker | F.A.T..

#chrome, #extensions, #firefox, #olwimpics, #olympics, #safari