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Tokyo Suffers Third Day Of Record COVID Cases As Star Pole Vaulter Infected

Tyler Durden's Photo
by Tyler Durden
Thursday, Jul 29, 2021 - 12:25 PM

Thursday has been another difficult day for the Tokyo Games, as more athletes, including US pole vaulter Sam Kendricks - a world champion widely seen as a contender for the gold, who is known to many for stopping mid-run to stand for the national anthem - was removed from competition after testing positive for the virus.

Kendricks is the latest in a growing number of infections inside the Olympic Village "bubble" that was compromised even before the Games began.

His infection also placed the entire Australian team at risk, though the squad has been cleared to return to training after passing preliminary tests. Three of the squad's members may have been exposed to Kendricks, the team says. But because of the infection risk, 41 athletes and 13 officials were forced to isolate in their rooms for two hours while testing was under way.

But that wasn't the only bad news. Tokyo also reported 3,865 new cases on Thursday, the third record tally in as many days.

Source: Worldometer

 

Japan's national infection rate also rose to a record 9,576. New cases recorded in the capital have already doubled from their levels just two weeks ago.

"We have never experienced the expansion of the infections of this magnitude," Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told reporters.

In total 903K Japanese have been confirmed infected with the virus, while just over 15,100 have succumbed.

"While almost nothing is helping to slow the infections, there are many factors that can accelerate them," said Dr. Shigeru Omi, a top government medical adviser. "The biggest risk is the lack of a sense of crisis, and without it the infections will further expand and put medical systems under severe strain."

Now, Japanese PM Yoshihide Suga is in the uncomfortable position of deciding whether to strengthen the State of Emergency in Tokyo - which is Japan's fourth since the start of the pandemic - which he will decide on Friday. He will decide whether to expand the order to cover three additional prefectures near Tokyo. The government is also weighing whether to extend emergency orders in Tokyo and the southern island of Okinawa beyond the current end date of Aug. 22.

Given the fact that the Games are proving immensely unpopular domestically largely because spectators have been barred from nearly all events (hundreds even showed up to protest the opening ceremony) this doesn't exactly bode well for PM Suga's political future.

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