Torch relay in first positive COVID case

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Tokyo Olympics organisers say a policeman tested positive for COVID-19 a day after his assignment last week at the Olympic torch relay.

It is the first positive test connected to the relay since it began March 25 from northeastern Fukushima prefecture.

Organisers say the 30-year-old policeman was assigned to control traffic on the April 17 leg in southwestern Kagawa prefecture.

They said the officer developed symptoms and tested positive the next day and health authorities are investigating.

Officials say the policeman was wearing a mask and taking social-distancing precautions and other measures.

The report comes as Japan is preparing to declare a third state of emergency in western metropolitan areas around Osaka, and in Tokyo.

The torch relay involves 10,000 runners crisscrossing Japan for four months, ending at the arrival at the National Stadium on July 23 to kick off the scheduled opening ceremony.

For precautions, legs last week were run in a city park in Osaka and taken off the public streets.

Something similar is expected for some legs on May 1-2 on the southern island of Okinawa.