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Eight more prefectures are slated to ask the central government to place them in the COVID-19 pre-emergency stage to deal with the ongoing spread of the novel coronavirus, it was learned Thursday.

The central government decided Wednesday to place Tokyo and 12 other prefectures in the pre-emergency stage from Friday until Feb. 13. Okinawa, Yamaguchi and Hiroshima prefectures are already on the pre-emergency list.

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