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United States warns against travel to Japan amid COVID-19 surge

The United States warned against travel to Japan on Monday, amid a surge in COVID-19 cases in the country. File Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI
The United States warned against travel to Japan on Monday, amid a surge in COVID-19 cases in the country. File Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI | License Photo

May 24 (UPI) -- The U.S. State Department on Monday advised Americans not to travel to Japan amid a surge in COVID-19 cases in the country.

The agency raised its travel advisory for Japan to "Level 4: Do Not Travel" indicating a "very high level of COVID-19" in the country.

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Japan is currently under a state of emergency covering Tokyo and two other regions that was set to remain in effect through the end of May after Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga extended it earlier this month.

The nation reported 4,045 new COVID-19 cases and 62 deaths on Monday, bringing its totals to 722,630 infections and 12,351 fatalities since the start of the pandemic, according to data gathered by Johns Hopkins University.

Only 4.4% of Japan's population has received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine compared with 49.4% in the United States.

Japan last week approved the Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines for use in the country, along with the previously approved Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine.

The nation is set to hold the Summer Olympics in Tokyo on July 23 after the games were canceled last year amid the pandemic.

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Last week, International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Back said the organization has approved doctors and other frontline workers to the country as a precaution.

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