Japanese capital on Thursday reported a single-day record of novel coronavirus infections with 224 more cases reported by health authorities.

Tokyo has recorded over 7,000 COVID-19 cases among more than 20,000 across the country, Japan’s Kyodo news agency reported.

“The medical system is presently not under strain,” said Health Minister Katsunobu Kato.

Tokyo had witnessed a decline in new cases with only 75 on Wednesday after dropping to the double digits in the past seven days.

It was on April 17 that Tokyo reported its previous highest daily cases with 206 new COVID-19 patients.

The rise in infections have been linked to night clubs, and Tokyo’s governor has assured owners of assistance if they closed down to help stem the spread.

South Korea mulls ban on religious gatherings

Embattled South Korea reported 50 additional infections on Thursday, including 28 local infections.

The country has reported a total of 13,293 infections since the outbreak, the Seoul-based Yonhap news agency reported.

Authorities said there had been an increase in imported cases over the past two weeks, with 22 confirmed in the past 24 hours after peaking at 33 on Wednesday.

They added that the new cases were being reported from outside the capital Seoul and many were linked to religious places.

Last Friday, the government began mulling whether to ban church gatherings nationwide other than regular worship services.

Meanwhile, the Health Ministry said Thursday it would spend 197 billion South Korean won ($162 million) to support vaccine and drug development for COVID-19.

Imported cases continue to arrive in China

China on Thursday reported no new local COVID-19 cases, while imported cases continued to come in.

In a statement, China’s National Health Commission (NHC) confirmed nine more imported cases in four provinces among a total of 1,958 cases overall.

There have been fears of a second wave of the virus in the capital Beijing since mid-June, though no new infections have been reported for three days.

China has reported 83,581 confirmed cases while 4,634 people have died due to the infection since the outbreak of the virus in Wuhan city of Hubei province last December.

The pandemic has claimed nearly 550,000 lives worldwide, while recoveries exceeded 6.5 million, according to figures compiled by the US-based Johns Hopkins University.

Total confirmed cases topped 12 million early Thursday with South America, India and Russia being the top three hotspots in the world.

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