Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has tested positive for Covid-19, the government said.
Kishida, 65, developed a cough and slight fever on Saturday night and came up positive in a PCR test, according to a statement by the Cabinet Office. He’s currently resting at the prime minister’s official residence.
Coronavirus infections in the country have remained near record highs, with 24,780 Covid cases found in Tokyo alone on Sunday. That’s forcing politicians and health-care officials to reconsider what steps, if any, are needed to contain the outbreak. The same conundrum is facing countries across the globe, as the arrival of more infectious omicron subvariants has led to higher infection rates even as testing in most areas is on the decline.
Even so, the end of pandemic restrictions on businesses in late March helped to spur the Japanese economy. Consumer spending, which accounts for more than half of Japan’s economic output, led the growth, as did capital expenditure. The relaxing of Covid rules resulted in increased spending at restaurants and hotels, as well as on clothes.
Kishida is able to continue his duties but will cancel a planned trip to Tunisia next weekend, the Nikkei business daily reported, citing an unidentified person.
Pakistan’s media watchdog – the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority or PEMRA – has barred TV channels from broadcasting live the speeches of former prime local media, minister Imran Khan has reported. The action came after the cricketer-turned politician – who has been attacking the Shehbaz Sharif government ever since his party lost power earlier this year – on Saturday slammed the police, bureaucracy and the Election Commission, and threatened to file cases against them.
World Senior Citizen’s Day is celebrated each year on August 21 to recognise the achievements of the more mature representatives of the world. The day provides an opportunity to show appreciation towards senior citizens for their dedication, accomplishments, and services they give throughout their lives. Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant also urged the people to ‘express our gratitude for the wisdom and love’ senior citizens share with us.
Ahead of Independence Day, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky on Saturday warned the citizens of the war-torn nation that they have to be vigilant in the coming week amid fresh blasts in Crimea and a missile attack near a nuclear power plant that wounded 12 civilians. Ukraine will mark its 31st Independence Day on August 24, even as the country fights nearly six months of a Russian invasion.
Japan is considering the deployment of 1,000 long-range cruise missiles to boost its counterattack capability against China, the Yomiuri newspaper reported on Sunday. The arms, launched by ships or aircraft, would be stationed mainly around the southern Nansei islands and capable of reaching the coastal areas of North Korea and China, the Yomiuri said. Representatives from Japan’s foreign ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the report.
An International Monetary Fund technical team is arriving in Colombo this Wednesday to assess the total external and internal debt of the bankrupt nation before the exercise of restructuring of debt begins after a discussion with the World Bank next month in Washington. The IMF team will be in Sri Lanka from August 24 to August 31.