Press Releases

Marine Forces Japan takes additional protective measures and further restricts off-base liberty due to coronavirus concerns
17 Apr 2020

OKINAWA, Japan – Marine Forces Japan is taking additional protective measures to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus by further restricting off-base activities beginning April 17.


These changes are motivated by the continued spread of coronavirus cases throughout the region, USFJ’s declaration of a Japan-wide public health emergency, and the Government of Japan’s expanded state of emergency to encompass all of Japan. These preventive measures are intended to ensure the protection of the force, our families, and our local communities, both on and off-base.


The current measures include, but are not limited to:

  • Personnel are not allowed to use non-military public/mass transportation (buses, trains, taxis, etc.). 
  • Personnel are allowed to go to off-base establishments for essential services, which are medical appointments, veterinary services, grocery shopping, banking, bill payment, gas/service stations, and postal services.
  • Personnel are not allowed to eat inside, get take out, or drive through restaurants, or go to any off-base establishment that is not an essential service. This includes schools and childcare.
  • Personnel are allowed to engage in off-base outdoor physical fitness like running, hiking, swimming, as long as they avoid close contact and adhere to social distancing guidance.


The intent of these measures is to further reduce the potential spread of the coronavirus among our personnel and our Japanese neighbors by limiting movements and minimizing in-person interactions.  They apply to all MARFOR-J service members, dependents, Status of Forces Agreement-status civilians, contractors, and other MARFOR-J personnel. 


Our responsibility to be America’s force in readiness has not changed.  MARFOR-J will continue mission essential training and activities, while implementing social distancing practices and leveraging telework and other means to limit the potential for exposure. We will maintain our proficiency and readiness in support of our allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific. 


These additional measures will be continually assessed to determine if additional ones may be required to ensure the protection of the force, or if they can be relaxed. 


For questions about Marine Forces – Japan’s response to COVID-19, contact III Marine Expeditionary Force, Communication Strategy and Operations at


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