In the press review of Thursday, April 22, we will discuss: Fujifilm entering the third phase of trial for treatment against the coronavirus, the considerable drop in tourism in Japan and the discovery of the diary of a pioneer of Japanese feminism .
Fujifilm against the coronavirus
The Fujifilm company said on Wednesday that it has started phase 3 of its trials in Japan for its drug Avigan, against the COVID-19, thus reviving hopes for a national treatment against the virus. National authorization for the antiviral drug, intended to treat the coronavirus, suffered a setback last December after the health ministry said the data from the trial was inconclusive. Over the years, Fujifilm turned away from its traditional activities of photography and office solutions, to the healthcare sector. Avigan, known by the generic name of favipiravir, has been studied in dozens of trials around the world, and has been approved as COVID-19 treatment in Russia, in India and in Indonesia. But concerns remain, as the drug has been shown to cause birth defects in animal studies. The Japan has already approved Avigan as an emergency influenza drug, and the government last year asked Fujifilm to triple national stocks of the drug.
Substantial drop in tourism in Japan
The estimated number of foreign visitors to Japan in March fell 93.6% from the previous year, to 12,300. Travel restrictions remain in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. The year-over-year figure marks the 18th consecutive month of decline, although it was up 4,900 from February, according to Japan National Tourism Organization. The month-over-month increase is apparently due to the arrival of those authorized to enter the country for “Exceptional circumstances”, such as exchange students before the new academic year, as well as partners of Japanese nationals. Compared with March 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic swept the world, the number of visitors to the Japan plunged 99.6%. Japan continues to ban entry of foreign travelers in principle, amid rising COVID-19 infections. Data shows that 28,900 Japanese nationals left the country last month, down 89.4% from the previous year.
Exhibition on the theme of feminism
The unpublished diary of a pioneer of Japanese feminism will be on display at her memorial museum starting this weekend, half a century after her death. Several photocopied pages from the diary of Raichô Hiratsuka, in which she argued that women should make their voices heard on peace issues, will be on display at her home museum in Ueda, county. Nagano, from Saturday, on the occasion of 50th anniversary of the death of Raichô Hiratsuka and 110th anniversary of the publication of Seito, the first Japanese literary magazine written by women for women. This year’s exhibition will focus on Raichô Hiratsuka’s role in the emancipation of women, an area in which the Japan is still far behind many other countries. To protest against the sexist remarks of Yoshiro Mori, who resigned from the head of the organizing body of Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games in February, the exhibition will also shed light on the history of “Women who are not silent”. Hiratsuka’s grandson, Naofumi Okumura, 76, who kept the newspaper at his home in Tokyo, told Kyôdô News: “I hope many people will be touched by his thoughts for peace. ”