Tokyo confirms 55 new coronavirus infections, highest since May 5

Kyodo News

Posted at Jun 24 2020 07:39 PM

Tokyo confirms 55 new coronavirus infections, highest since May 5 1
Passersby walk on the crossing during the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) at Shinjuku district in Tokyo, Japan, June 24, 2020. Issei Kato, Reuters

TOKYO - The Tokyo metropolitan government on Wednesday confirmed 55 new coronavirus infections in the capital, an official said, marking the highest figure since early May.

The figure is the largest increase since May 5, when the Tokyo government reported 57 cases. The latest development has reignited concerns of a fresh wave of infections in Japan.

The discovery of the new cases brought the total number of coronavirus infection in the capital to 5,895, the most among Japan's 47 prefectures.

More than 10 cases were discovered through group testing targeting workers in the nightlife industry conducted by Shinjuku Ward, and some other cases included employees of a workplace where 7 people had tested positive earlier.

"It is an example of how group infections can occur at a workplace," Tokyo Gov. Yuriko Koike told reporters. "I want people to reconfirm their way of working" in accordance with measures against the coronavirus.

The governor added it is hard for authorities to grasp how thoroughly preventive steps are implemented at offices, as a large number of people are returning to work following the lifting of the state of emergency over the pandemic in late May.

New infections in Tokyo had been on a declining trend through late May. But they rebounded after the state of emergency was lifted on May 25 for the last batch of prefectures, including Tokyo.

The country last week lifted its final advisories on inter-prefectural travel. Businesses have also reopened.

On Friday, the Tokyo metropolitan government withdrew its temporary closure request on all businesses by lifting the last-remaining request on live music venues, nightclubs and similar entertainment establishments where people come into close contact in enclosed spaces.

It was the last phase of the Tokyo government's 3-step restriction easing process.