1. The Japanese government is expected to decide on Friday to extend the coronavirus state of emergency for the Greater Tokyo area by two weeks until March 21. Officials have been analyzing the infection status and the strain on the healthcare systems in those prefectures. They have determined that hospital bed occupancy rates in the area need to be lowered further.
  2. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has stressed that his country will work with its allies and partners to deal with China.
  3.  German Chancellor Angela Merkel has extended the store shutdown over the coronavirus pandemic, but says restrictions will be gradually eased in proportion to regional infection numbers.
March 4, Thursday, 2021 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline read by Ms. Yamamoto Miki