Japan's COVID-related death toll continues to surge

The number of people who died after contracting the coronavirus in Japan is rising at a faster pace in the country's eighth wave of the pandemic.

The total death toll since January 2020 had reached 62,264 by Saturday.

The health ministry says 12,620 of them have died since December last year. This means that almost one in five victims died in the past month and a half.

The number of deaths was 1,864 in October and 2,985 in November. The figure rose to 7,622 in December.

The death toll in the first two weeks of January stood at 4,998.

Of those who have died since December, the ages of 6,505 people are known. Most of them are senior citizens.

People in their 70s account for 17.25 percent, those in their 80s, 40.55 percent, and those in their 90s or older, 34.76 percent.