COVID-19 measures likely to end in 15 Japan prefectures on March 21

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Osaka Gov. Hirofumi Yoshimura speaks about COVID-19 priority measures at the Osaka prefectural government building on Feb. 21.

The central government is preparing to lift pre-emergency priority measures against COVID-19 as scheduled on March 21 in 15 prefectures, according to sources.

The measures would be lifted in the prefectures of Hokkaido, Aomori, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma, Saitama, Chiba, Kanagawa, Ishikawa, Shizuoka, Gifu, Kyoto, Hyogo, Kagawa and Kumamoto.

Priority measures are also scheduled to be in place through March 21 in the three prefectures of Tokyo, Aichi and Osaka. The government plans to decide as early as Wednesday whether to end the measures there, based on the wishes of those prefectures, the sources said.