• staff report, Jiji

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Tokyo reported 187 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, dipping below 200 for the first time in a week as the central government lifted the coronavirus state of emergency covering the capital region.

The figure was slightly higher than the 175 cases reported last Monday.

Among Monday’s new cases in the capital, 39 were detected in people in their 20s, 35 were in their 40s and 29 were in their 30s. Those age 65 or older totaled 38 cases.

The number of severely ill COVID-19 patients under the metropolitan government’s criteria remained static at 47.

The cumulative number of cases in the capital is now 117,704. The results came after 2,968 tests were conducted Friday. It usually takes about three days for test results to affect the daily case count.

Ahead of the Tokyo announcement, the weekly number of new cases nationwide reported as of 10 a.m. Monday had grown for the third straight week, with the cumulative number of infections, including among cruise ship passengers and crew members, standing at 457,592, up by 8,958 from a week before.

In the capital, the cumulative total rose by 2,108 over the past week, after increasing by 1,954 in the preceding week and growing by 1,779 in the week before that.

Over the past week, new cases confirmed in the Tokyo metropolitan area added up to 4,243, almost unchanged from 4,242 in the preceding week. New cases came to 762 in Saitama, down from 847, to 680 in Chiba, down from 723, and to 693 in Kanagawa, down from 718.

In the Tohoku region, the cumulative infection total rose by 630 in Miyagi Prefecture, where its daily infection count exceeded 100 for the first time on Wednesday.

The country’s cumulative death toll linked to the coronavirus came to 8,849, up by 241 from the previous week.

On Sunday, Japan confirmed 1,119 new cases, standing above 1,000 for the sixth straight day. Nineteen new fatalities linked to the virus were reported, including eight in Saitama Prefecture and four in Tokyo.

Miyagi Prefecture, meanwhile, reported 112 new case Sunday, standing around 100 since Wednesday. In Yamagata Prefecture, near Miyagi, 31 people had tested positive for the virus — a record daily high.

In response to the surge in infections, the Miyagi Prefectural Government decided on Sunday to ask some 10,000 restaurants and bars in Sendai, the prefecture’s capital, to close by 9 p.m. between Thursday and April 11.

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