Tokyo, July 29 (EFE).- Tokyo set a new record of daily coronavirus infections on Thursday with 3,865 cases, almost double the total from a week ago.
The Japanese capital is hosting the Olympic Games in a secure bubble without any spectators, but infections have continued to rise.
The spike in the capital is due to the spread of new and more contagious delta and beta variants, and mainly affects people under 60, an age group with lower vaccination rates.
Japanese authorities insist that the rise in cases is unrelated to the Games, which are taking place under severe restrictions of movement for all participants, and plan to extend the state of health emergency in force in Tokyo to the surrounding regions.
Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike said Thursday that the Games “help people to stay at home to watch them on TV,” and again urged Tokyo residents to avoid any journeys that are not strictly necessary.
No outbreak related to the thousands of foreign athletes coming to Japan has been detected so far.
Medical expert Shigeru Omi, who heads the panel advising the government in the fight against the pandemic, cited among the factors for the rise of the virus the fact that “people are already accustomed to Covid,” and this time of year when school vacations, family celebrations and the Games coincide.
“The biggest problem is that the sense of danger is not shared throughout society. If awareness is still lacking, the spread of the virus will accelerate and will soon cause greater pressure on the healthcare system,” Omi warned.
The expert also called for more measures to be taken to reduce contact between citizens, and noted that the government and the Olympic organizing committee “have a responsibility to do everything possible to prevent the collapse of the healthcare system.”
The organizing committee on Thursday announced 24 new Covid infections in people involved with the Games, including three athletes, the highest daily number of infections since the data was first collected in early July.EFE