The outbreak of coronavirus cases at US military bases in Japan is "extremely serious," said Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono on Tuesday.
A total of 100 US military personnel and their families have so far been diagnosed with Covid-19 across six US Military facilities in Japan since early July.
The US Marine Corps Air Station Futenma on Okinawa, with 71 confirmed cases, is the worst-impacted location.
Patients on commercial planes: Three US personnel, who tested positive after arriving in Tokyo over the weekend, took commercial flight en route to Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni in Yamaguchi Prefecture -- despite guidelines prohibiting them from using public transportation on Tuesday.
“It is an extremely serious situation. I asked the US side to strictly punish them and to take a serious action to prevent recurrence in the future,” Kono said.
Okinawa Gov. Denny Tamaki is arriving in Tokyo today to seek help from the Japanese government to press for more disclosure from the US military, and halt the arrivals of new US military personnel from outside Japan.