Japan PM says no need to declare emergency due to coronavirus

World

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attends a news conference on Japan’s response to the coronavirus outbreak at his official residence in Tokyo, Japan March 14, 2020. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s coronavirus outbreak is not at a stage that requires the government to declare an emergency, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Saturday.

Abe, who made the comment at a news conference in Tokyo, also said that experts have concluded that Japan has not seen an explosive rise in coronavirus cases.

The number of coronavirus cases in Japan has risen to 1,423 as of Saturday, said public broadcaster NHK. The total of 1,423 infections includes 697 from the Diamond Princess cruise ship and 14 returnees on charter flights from China, according to NHK data.

Japan has now recorded 28 deaths from the virus, including seven from the cruise ship, NHK said.

Reporting by Chang-Ran Kim and Linda Sieg; Writing by David Dolan; Editing by Michael Perry

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