Japan declared a state of emergency in seven prefectures on April 7 amid a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases in the country.

These seven prefectures include Tokyo, Kanagawa, Saitama, Chiba, Osaka, Hyogo and Fukuoka.

The state of emergency will last for around one month until “at least” May 6, according to local newspaper The Japan Times.

As of April 7, Japan recorded 3,906 confirmed Covid-19 cases, according to Japan’s ministry of health, labour and welfare.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said at a press conference on April 6 that Japan will not “enforce the lockdowns of cities as seen abroad” even if a state of emergency is declared. He added that experts believe that a lockdown will not be necessary.

“The declaration of a state of emergency aims at obtaining greater cooperation from the public as much as possible to reduce people to people contact which could result in transmission for the period of approximately one month and thoroughly building medical treatment structures,” said Abe.

He added that even under a state of emergency, public transportation such as trains will continue to run, and supermarkets and other businesses will remain open.

Japan Airlines said it will further reduce domestic flights between April 8 and 12 in response to the state of emergency.

The airline said about 44 per cent of services will be reduced during this period, affecting a total of 769 flights.

Details of its affected domestic flights can be found here (as of April 7).

British Airways has also suspended flights to Japan from Wednesday April 8.

Japan announced in late March that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games will be postponed to summer 2021.