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Carlos Japan

Carlos Ghosn: Japan ask US to extradite ex-Green Beret and son over Japan escape – BBC News

Former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn in Beirut, Lebanon, 14 January 2src2src

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Reuters

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Carlos Ghosn fled from Japan to Lebanon last December

Japan has asked the US to extradite a former special forces soldier and his son for allegedly helping ex-Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn flee Japan last year.

Ex-Green Beret Michael Taylor and his son Peter were held in Massachusetts in May, several months after Japan had issued warrants for their arrest.

The US authorities confirmed a formal extradition request was submitted.

Mr Ghosn, who was detained in Japan on financial misconduct charges in 2018, made a dramatic escape last year.

The former Nissan boss denies the charges against him.

Despite being under house arrest and monitored 24 hours a day, on 29 December he managed to fly to the Lebanese capital Beirut via Turkey.

Details of the Taylors’ alleged involvement in the escape are unclear. But Japanese prosecutors have said the two were in Japan at the time and helped Mr Ghosn evade security checks as he left.

In May, prosecutors in Turkey charged seven people over the escape. The suspects – four pilots, two flight attendants, and an airline executive – are also accused of helping Mr Ghosn flee.

They go on trial in Istanbul on Friday, with Turkish prosecutors seeking up to eight years in jail for the four pilots and the airline executive.

Full details of the escape have never been fully explained. Mr Ghosn, who holds Brazilian, French and Lebanese nationalities, ran Renault and Nissan as part of a three-way car alliance.

He is accused of misreporting his compensation package, but has insisted he can never get a fair hearing in Japan.

Since his arrival in Lebanon, he has told reporters he was a “hostage” in Japan, where he was left with a choice between dying there or running.

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extends Japan

Japan extends state of emergency as coronavirus keeps spreading – CBS News

Tokyo — Japan’s prime minister on Monday extended a state of emergency over the coronavirus until the end of May, as the government warned it was too soon to lift restrictions.

“I will extend the period of the state of emergency I declared on April 7 until May 31. The area covered is all prefectures in the nation,” Shinzo Abe said after a meeting to discuss the measures.

Abe declared a month-long state of emergency that initially covered Tokyo and six other regions on April 7, later expanding it to cover the entire country.

It had been due to expire on Wednesday, but the country’s minister for the virus response Yasutoshi Nishimura said earlier that new infections were still growing.

“The number of new cases has declined, but unfortunately the decrease has not reached the targeted level,” he said during a meeting with an expert panel advising the government on the pandemic.

“As the healthcare sector remains under pressure, we need continued cooperation from people.”

Japan’s virus outbreak remains comparatively small compared to those seen in parts of Europe and the United States, with over 15,000 infections recorded and 510 deaths.

But the extension was backed by both experts advising the government and regional governors, with concerns that a sudden spike in cases that would overwhelm healthcare systems remains possible.

Japan’s COVID-19 response

The state of emergency falls far short of the harshest measures seen in parts of Europe and the United States. It allows local governors to urge people to stay at home and call on businesses to stay shut.

But officials cannot compel citizens to comply, and there are no punishments for those who fail to do so.

The government is expected to urge residents in 13 high-risk prefectures, including Japan’s biggest cities, to continue cutting person-to-person contact by 80 percent and exercise other strict social distancing measures.

But museums, libraries and some other facilities are likely to be allowed to reopen so long as they take anti-virus measures.

New coronavirus infections in Asia spur fears of resurgence

For the rest of Japan, prefectures will be allowed to loosen restrictions on business closures and small gatherings but residents will still be asked not to travel outside their home regions. Bars and nightclubs will be asked to remain shut.

It remains unclear when and whether schools, many of which have been closed since March, will be able to reopen, with officials recently suggesting a possible phased reopening with certain key grades resuming before others.

Abe said experts would review the situation around May 14, and the measures could be lifted at that time depending on the situation in a given region.

Hospitals feeling the strain

Despite so far avoiding the devastating tolls seen in places like Italy and New York, there have been persistent fears that Japan’s healthcare system could be quickly overwhelmed by a sudden spike in infections.

There are just five ICU beds per 100,000 people in Japan, less than half the number in Italy, and doctors’ associations have warned that hospitals are already stretched thin.

Measures have been implemented to try to ease the pressure, including sending coronavirus patients with mild symptoms to hotels for quarantine rather than keeping them in overcrowded hospitals.

The government has also said it is increasing testing capacity but continues to face criticism for the relatively low numbers of tests being carried out, in part because of stringent criteria.

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