2 ‘isolated clusters’ are the source of COVID-19 outbreak on Okinawa, Japan, Marines say

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An outbreak of COVID-19 at Marine Corps installations on Okinawa, Japan, came from clusters found on Camp Hansen and Marine Corps Air Station, Futemna, a Marine official said.

The two installations were locked down in early July, when “several” Marines tested positive for the potentially deadly virus.

The positive tests were the first the island had seen since April and led to Marine Forces Japan reinstating tougher safety restrictions, Marine Corps Times previously reported.

“After rigorous contact tracing and conducting more than 4,500 COVID-19 tests in the past month, Marine Forces Japan has identified two localized clusters, one at Camp Hansen and one at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma,” 1st Lt. Ryan Bruce, a Marine Corps spokesman, told Marine Corps Times in a Monday email.

A total of 225 Marines in Okinawa, Japan, have tested positive on the two Marine Corps bases since the July Fourth weekend, Stars and Stripes reported.

A total of 3,003 Marines have tested positive for the virus overall, according to the Department of Defense.

“While we continue to monitor and address current COVID cases, the MEF (Marine Expeditionary Force) is maintaining our readiness by continuing mission essential training with appropriate safeguards and mitigation,” Bruce said in the email.

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“This includes maximizing telework, ensuring the use of cloth facemasks, and social distancing whenever practical.”

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