• STAFF REPORT, JIJI, Kyodo

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Osaka Prefecture posted a record 1,262 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, while Tokyo cases exceeded 1,000 for the second time this week amid signs of an unrelenting pace of new infections despite the state of emergency declared in those prefectures late last month.

Osaka also reported 41 new deaths from the disease.

Tokyo reported 1,050 cases of COVID-19 on Saturday, rising above the 1,000 threshold for the second time this week.

Saturday’s figure, the most in the capital since Jan. 28, was substantially more than the 876 infections reported a week ago on May 24. Tokyo reported 1,027 cases on Thursday.

The caseload in the capital boosted the seven-day average of new cases to 798.3, compared with 714 the week before.

People age 65 or over, who are at high risk of developing severe symptoms, accounted for 93 of Saturday’s cases, while people in their 20s accounted for 272 infections.

The number of severely ill patients under the metropolitan government’s criteria, meanwhile, fell by two from a day earlier to 63.

On Friday, Japan confirmed 4,687 new cases, with the daily count falling below 5,000 for the first time in three days.

A total of 39 deaths linked to the virus were reported the same day, including eight in Osaka Prefecture. The number of severely ill coronavirus patients stood at 978, up by 27 from Thursday, according to the health ministry.

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