• STAFF REPORT, JIJI

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Tokyo confirmed 3,709 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday — the capital’s third-highest daily tally ever — as infections continued to rise nationwide.

The total was 1,500 more than the 2,195 posted the previous day in the capital. It was also up from the 2,848 cases reported a week before, and came as the delta variant of the virus continues to wreak havoc across the country.

The seven-day average of new cases in the capital came to 3,337.4 cases, compared with 1,762.6 a week earlier, while the number of severe COVID-19 cases under the metropolitan government’s criteria fell by two from the previous day to 112. The capital also reported seven deaths linked to the virus.

The three prefectures in the Tokyo area added to the emergency declaration continued to see soaring daily caseloads on Tuesday, with Saitama confirming 1,053 cases — its most ever in a single day — Chiba recording 781 infections, it’s third most ever, and Kanagawa reporting 1,298 new infections. Ibaraki Prefecture, which borders Chiba, confirmed 197 cases.

But the COVID-19 surge has not been limited to the metropolitan area.

In the Kansai region, Osaka Prefecture reported 1,079 cases, Hyogo Prefecture saw 441 cases and Kyoto Prefecture logged 190 infections, its second most.

Elsewhere, hard-hit Okinawa Prefecture confirmed 467 cases — its highest single-day total — while Hokkaido reported 211 infections. Fukuoka Prefecture, meanwhile, recorded 510 infections, its most for a Tuesday, and Aichi Prefecture saw 258 cases.

Other prefectures posting single-day records included:

  • Gunma Prefecture, with 148 infections
  • Niigata Prefecture, with 61 cases
  • Fukui Prefecture, with 43 infections
  • Saga Prefecture, with 79 cases

On Monday, Osaka and three prefectures neighboring Tokyo joined the capital and Okinawa Prefecture under a coronavirus state of emergency prompted by a nationwide surge in cases.

The country’s fourth state of emergency will run through Aug. 31, while quasi-emergency measures also took effect Monday in Hokkaido, Ishikawa, Kyoto, Hyogo and Fukuoka prefectures, lasting until the end of the month.

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