• staff report, Jiji

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Tokyo confirmed 40 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday, the lowest so far this year and below 100 for the ninth straight day.

Sunday’s figure was 20 fewer than a week earlier, while the seven-day average of new cases stood at 60.4, compared to 114.7 a week before.

The number of severely ill COVID-19 patients under the metropolitan government’s standards came to 35, the same figure as Saturday, while six new deaths were reported on Sunday.

As the downtrend continues, the government is now considering lifting all the restrictions on bars and restaurants next month, economic revitalization minister Daishiro Yamagiwa said Sunday.

“We will consider fully lifting requests for shorter operating hours unless new infection cases increase again,” Yamagiwa said during a television program.

On Saturday, 509 people newly tested positive for the virus nationwide, with the daily count standing below 1,000 for 10 days in a row. The number of COVID-19 patients in serious condition came to 335, down by 22 from Friday.

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