Japan to lower COVID-19 to flu status, further easing rules


              Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida arrives at his office in Tokyo Friday, Jan. 20, 2023. Kishida on Friday announced plans to start preparations for downgrading legal status of COVID-19 to an equivalent of seasonal influenza in the spring, a move that would further relax mask wearing and other preventive measures as the country seeks an exit plan. (Kyodo News via AP)
            
              Commuters wear masks outside Tokyo Station in Tokyo Friday, Jan. 20, 2023. Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida on Friday announced plans to start preparations for downgrading legal status of COVID-19 to an equivalent of seasonal influenza in the spring, a move that would further relax mask wearing and other preventive measures as the country seeks an exit plan. (Kyodo News via AP)
Japan to lower COVID-19 to flu status, further easing rules