Myanmar students can stay in Japan even after visas expire

The exemption applies to students and technical interns who could face trouble returning home…reports Asian Lite News

Japan will let Myanmar citizens remain in the country legally even after their visas expire, in response to deteriorating political conditions in the Southeast Asian nation following the military coup, reported Nikkei Asia.

The exemption applies to students and technical interns who could face trouble returning home. They can choose to study or work in Japan for another six or 12 months, according to the plans outlined by the country’s Immigration Services Agency to lawmakers on Wednesday.

If the political situation in Myanmar fails to improve, these Myanmar citizens will be able to apply for another extension.

On February 1, the Myanmar military overthrew the civilian government and declared a year-long state of emergency. The coup triggered mass protests and was met by deadly violence.

According to Nikkei Asia, Japan also will accelerate the screening process for refugees, and allow applicants from Myanmar to stay and work in the country without that status.

It further reported that the Myanmar junta has fired two diplomats stationed in Tokyo for speaking out against the military’s crackdown on pro-democracy protesters. The Japanese government is looking to grant the diplomats visas, such as those designated for highly skilled professionals.

There were 35,049 Myanmar citizens living in Japan as of the end of 2020, Nikkei Asia reported citing a preliminary data released by the Immigration Services Agency. A total of 2,944 were seeking asylum at the end of March.

At least 828 people have been confirmed to be killed since the military takeover on February 1, according to Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP).

Meanwhile, Japan’s health ministry said that the number of Covid-19 patients nationwide designated as being in a serious condition rose to a record high of 1,413 on Wednesday.

The number of serious-ill patients who typically need intensive care treatment in hospitals and require the use of ventilators or extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) machines jumped by 119 from a day earlier, the ministry said.

The officials said that 4,536 new cases and 116 deaths were recorded on Wednesday.

The total infections since the outbreak here have risen to 730,646 across the country, with the death toll increasing to 12,640 people, according to the latest figures.

New cases in Tokyo increased by 743, the health ministry said, while those in Osaka rose by 331. Aichi Prefecture saw daily infections up by 331 and Hokkaido Prefecture reported 551 new Covid-19 cases, according to official figures.

In a bid to accelerate its inoculation campaign, two mass vaccination centres were opened in Tokyo and Osaka Prefecture on Monday with the state-backed facilities aimed at helping to complete administering vaccinations of 36 million seniors aged 65 or older by the end of July. (ANI/IANS)

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