Organizers of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on Monday capped the number of spectators at 10,000 for each venue, days after experts said that holding the event without fans was the least-risky option.
Authorities have pushed on with holding the multibillion-dollar sports extravaganza despite public opposition and deep concern about a resurgence in infections.
The Tokyo Olympics will allow some local fans to attend when the Games open in just over a month. They will not be allowed to cheer, must wear masks and are being told to go straight home after the event.
Japan has largely avoided the kind of explosive outbreaks that have devastated other countries, but its vaccine rollout has been slow and the medical system pushed to the brink in some places.
Tokyo and other areas are under “quasi-emergency” status until July 11. The Olympics are set to open July 23.
-From Reuters and The Associated Press, last updated at 7 a.m. ET
What’s happening across Canada
As of 11:15 a.m. ET on Monday, Canada had reported 1,409,195 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 11,457 considered active. A CBC News tally of deaths stood at 26,079. More than 32.2 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far across the country, according to CBC’s vaccine tracker.
In Quebec, where a coroner’s inquest is looking into deaths in long-term care homes during the early stages of the pandemic, health officials on Monday reported no new deaths and 90 new cases of COVID-19.
Ontario on Monday reported three additional deaths and 270 new cases of COVID-19, the lowest single-day figure the province has seen since last September.
The province, which has begun its reopening process amid falling case numbers, is moving to make second doses of COVID-19 vaccine available to more residents earlier. According to the province, people who received a first dose of mRNA vaccine “on or before May 9” are now eligible to “book or rebook their second dose appointment at a shortened interval.”
Across the North, there were no new cases reported in Nunavut on Monday. “This is the 9th day in a row with no new cases,” Premier Joe Savikataaq said on Twitter.
Health officials in Yukon and the Northwest Territories had not yet provided updated information for the day.
In Atlantic Canada on Monday, Nova Scotia reported no new cases of COVID-19. Health officials in New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Prince Edward Island had not yet provided updated COVID-19 figures for the day.
Manitoba reported six new deaths and 93 cases of COVID-19 on Sunday — the lowest single-day case number seen in the Prairie province since mid-April.
Saskatchewan, meanwhile, reported one death and 60 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday as Premier Scott Moe announced that the province will lift all health restrictions on July 11. Moe said the province can move to Step 3 of its pandemic reopening plan because Saskatchewan is so close to reaching the vaccination thresholds needed for a full reopening.
In Alberta, health officials on Sunday reported one death and 100 new cases of COVID-19.
British Columbia will report updated figures covering the weekend later Monday.
-From CBC News and The Canadian Press, last updated at 11:15 a.m. ET
What’s happening around the world
As of early Monday morning, more than 178.5 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported around the world, according to Johns Hopkins University’s case tracker. The reported global death toll stood at more than 3.8 million, according to the information compiled by the U.S.-based university.
In the Asia-Pacific region, every adult in India is now eligible for a free vaccine paid for by the federal government. The changed role for the federal government starting Monday ends a complex system of buying and distributing vaccines that overburdened states and created inequities in who got the shots.
The switch comes as coronavirus cases continue to drop. India registered 53,256 new infections and 1,422 deaths in the last 24 hours, the lowest in nearly three months. That raises its totals past 29.8 million cases and 386,000 deaths, though both are likely undercounts.
Indonesia, meanwhile, will tighten social restrictions for two weeks starting Tuesday, a government minister said, in a bid to contain a surge in cases in the world’s fourth-most populous country. The curbs will apply to “red zones” where cases have been rising sharply this month, co-ordinating Economic Minister Airlangga Hartarto told a streamed news conference on Monday.
Hong Kong authorities said quarantine requirements will soon be relaxed for travellers who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and arrive from certain lower-risk countries.
In the Americas, Brazil’s death toll from COVID-19 surpassed 500,000 as experts warn that the world’s second-deadliest outbreak may worsen due to delayed vaccinations and the government’s refusal to back physical distancing measures.
Thousands took to the streets across Brazil over the weekend to protest against President Jair Bolsonaro’s pandemic response, blasting the leader for not acquiring vaccines fast enough and for questioning the need for mask-wearing.
In Africa, South Africa on Sunday reported 13,155 new cases of COVID-19 and 112 new deaths.
Uganda, meanwhile, recently moved to step up its lockdown measures amid an increase of variant of concern cases. The measures announced late Friday by President Yoweri Museveni include a ban on private and public transportation within and across districts, including in the capital Kampala.
In Europe, Britain is piloting a plan to ditch the self-isolation requirement for people who have received two doses of vaccine if they are exposed to someone with the virus, the health minister said.
In the Middle East, Qatar will only allow people fully vaccinated to attend next year’s World Cup and is in talks to secure one million doses, the prime minister said.
-From Reuters, The Associated Press and CBC News, last updated at 9:40 a.m. ET