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Photo: Stanislav Kogiku/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

An Olympic athlete and staff member are among six new positive cases of the coronavirus, the local Tokyo organizing committee said Thursday.

Why it matters: The announcement comes one day after the International Olympic Committee revealed that an official on the refugee team tested positive. Japanese people continue to protest the games amid the latest uptick in positive cases ahead of opening day July 23.

  • Infectious disease experts say the Olympics don't have strong enough protocols for testing or ventilation, either in competition venues or in the Olympic village, Axios' Tina Reed writes.

Details: The unidentified athlete and staff member tested positive one day apart. Both are in a two-week quarantine period.

  • The other four are local contractors.
  • International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach said Thursday that "[r]isk for the other residents of Olympic village and risk for the Japanese people is zero," Reuters reports.
  • But health experts fear the Olympics could become a superspreader event.

The big picture: Tokyo reported 1,308 new cases on Thursday, per AP. It's the city's highest daily total since late January. The country itself has a 19% vaccination rate.

  • In a bid to prevent the virus from spreading, Japan's government has banned spectators from events. The country also extended its state of emergency.
  • Olympic athletes will hang medals around their own necks in a departure from previous ceremonies.
  • Members of the Olympic refugee team will make a delayed arrival to Tokyo due to the staffer's positive case.

Go deeper... Axios Today: Controversy ahead of the Olympics

Go deeper

DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas tests positive for COVID-19

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas. Photo: Patrick Semansky/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday morning.

Driving the news: Mayorkas, who is vaccinated, tested positive during "routine pre-travel protocols," DHS spokesperson Marsha Espinosa announced in a tweet.

Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling

Photo: Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Starbucks has dropped plans to require that U.S. workers get the COVID vaccine or submit to weekly testing, the company announced Tuesday in a memo to employees.

Why it matters: The company's decision comes in response to the Supreme Court's ruling last week to block the Biden administration's COVID-19 vaccine-or-test requirement for large employers.

3 hours ago - World

Netanyahu plea talks enter crunch time

Netanyahu (right) meets with his lawyer ahead of a court hearing last February. Photo: Reuven Casto/Pool/AFP via Getty

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel's opposition leader and former prime minister, is negotiating a possible plea deal over the corruption charges against him, but Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit appears to be toughening his terms.

Why it matters: Mandelblit leaves office on Jan. 31. Negotiations could continue beyond that point, but the next attorney general may be less interested in quickly reaching a deal.