Suga: Govt. considering state of emergency

Japan's Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide says the government is considering declaring a state of emergency for Tokyo and three surrounding prefectures as coronavirus cases surge.

He made the comment in a news conference on Monday.

The government is reportedly making arrangements to issue the declaration for Tokyo, Saitama, Chiba and Kanagawa as early as this week.

Suga also said that if the state of emergency is declared, it will be difficult to resume the government's "Go To Travel" domestic tourism campaign, which has been suspended through January 11.

He said the government is stepping up preparations to try to begin vaccinations by late February in efforts to prevent further spread of the coronavirus.