The Governors of Tokyo and its three adjoining prefectures have called for a more urgent response to the recent surge in coronavirus cases.
Tokyo Governor Koike Yuriko met with the minister in charge of the coronavirus response, Nishimura Yasutoshi, to ask for central government to declare another state of emergency for their region.
The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Tokyo hit a fresh high on Friday after a new, faster-spreading variant of the virus was detected in Japan.
Japan has shut its border to foreign travellers until at least the end of January, and elite athletes are no longer exempt from the travel restrictions.
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has promised to hold “safe and secure” Olympics in 2021 despite rising concern over the infection rate.