• Staff report, Jiji


The Tokyo Metropolitan Government reported 13 new positive COVID-19 cases Sunday, down by seven from a week before. The daily tally was below 30 for 31 consecutive days.

The latest seven-day average of new cases in Tokyo stood at 17.4, up from 16.3 a week before.

The number of seriously ill patients under the metropolitan government’s criteria was unchanged from Saturday at three. No death was reported among those infected.

The health ministry said Sunday the number of patients with severe symptoms nationwide remained unchanged from the previous day at 25.

On Saturday, Japan confirmed 149 new coronavirus infection cases and one fatal case.

The health ministry said the same day it has confirmed the first case of the omicron coronavirus variant who passed a quarantine inspection conducted upon arrival from abroad.

A foreign national in his 40s living in Gifu Prefecture tested positive for the strain, becoming the 13th confirmed omicron case in the country, according to the ministry and the Gifu Prefectural Government.

“We don’t think he was infected through community transmission,” a ministry official said.

The man arrived at Narita International Airport near Tokyo from Sri Lanka on Dec. 4. He tested negative in the quarantine inspection at the airport.

He entered hospital after developing a fever during self-isolation at home.

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