• Jiji, staff report


The daily number of deaths in Japan of people infected with the novel coronavirus hit a record 113 on Thursday.

The total included 20 in Tokyo, the highest figure yet for the capital, as well as 15 and 10 in the western prefectures of Osaka and Hyogo, respectively, and 11 in the eastern prefecture of Kanagawa.

One of the fatalities was a man in his 50s in Saitama Prefecture whose infection was found through coronavirus testing at an airport, according to the health ministry.

On Thursday, a total of 4,129 people were newly confirmed with the coronavirus across the country. The number of severely ill patients with the virus decreased by 11 from the previous day to 1,032.

Tokyo confirmed 1,064 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, again rising above the 1,000 mark after dipping below four digits the previous day, with the number of patients in serious condition remaining high.

The number of severely ill patients was 150, down by nine from the previous day, the metropolitan government said in a statement, a day after the country reported a record number of such cases.

In Tokyo, people in their 20s made up the largest group of new cases, at 178, followed by 173 in their 30s and 154 in their 40s. There were 264 new cases among people age 65 or over. The cumulative total in the capital is now 97,571.

Tokyo’s daily figure comes after 12,780 tests were conducted Monday. It usually takes around three days for tests to produce results.

On Wednesday, Japan recorded 3,970 new cases, while 90 new deaths were reported among infected people across the country the same day.

By prefecture, the daily number of coronavirus-linked fatalities hit a record high in Tokyo, at 18, and in Osaka, at 23.

Okinawa logged 131 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, its second-highest daily figure, with infections rapidly spreading in the island city of Miyakojima.

In Miyakojima, a prefecture-run hospital was closed for outpatients from Tuesday. The city's education board has decided to close nursery, elementary and junior high schools until Feb. 7.

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