• staff report, Jiji, Kyodo

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Tokyo confirmed 248 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, a day after the daily figure fell below 200 for the first time in six months.

Daily cases have continued to decline in Tokyo and the rest of the nation, prompting Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga to announce Tuesday that the state of emergency in all affected areas will be lifted at the end of the month.

It will be the first time since April 4 that no part of Japan is under either a COVID-19 state of emergency or quasi-state of emergency.

“The number of new coronavirus cases and patients with severe symptoms have dramatically declined,” Suga said at a committee meeting at the House of Representatives.

“We will enhance social response to the spread of infections through vaccinations and health care system enhancement among other steps and work on balancing antivirus measures and restoring normal lives,” he said.

Tuesday’s figure in Tokyo was down by five from a week earlier. The seven-day average of daily new cases came to 340.9 compared to 663.9 the week before.

In the capital, eight new deaths were reported, while the number of severely ill COVID-19 patients under the metropolitan government’s standards fell by eight from Monday to 117.

On Monday, 1,147 new cases were reported nationwide, under the 1,200 line for the first time since July 5.

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