Japan recorded more suicides in October than COVID-19 deaths during the entire pandemic

More people in Japan died by suicide in October than have died of COVID-19 during all of 2020, raising concerns about the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic that has left many unemployed and in social isolation.

Suicides rose to 2,153 in October, according to Japan’s National Police Agency. Over 17,000 people in Japan have committed suicide in 2020, compared to fewer than 2,000 people who have died from COVID-19 during the same period.

“We need to seriously confront reality,” chief government spokesman Katsunobu Kato said of the rising suicide rates of the country while announcing new efforts the country hoped would assist potential suicide victims.

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