Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will visit earthquake-devastated areas in Ishikawa Prefecture on Sunday to assess the damage firsthand, the government said.

In his first trip to the quake-hit region on the Sea of Japan coast since a magnitude-7.6 temblor occurred on New Year's Day, Kishida will speak with local residents staying at evacuation centers as well as exchange views with local government officials.

The prime minister is also expected to observe the affected areas from a helicopter.

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida (2nd from L, front) speaks at a meeting of the government's emergency disaster response task force at the premier's office in Tokyo on Jan. 11, 2024, following a deadly earthquake that jolted the Noto Peninsula and surrounding areas in central Japan on Jan. 1. (Kyodo) ==Kyodo

Kishida had planned to visit Ishikawa Prefecture on Saturday but decided to do so a day later due to inclement weather.

The construction of temporary housing units for people whose homes were damaged by the quake is under way as it will take a considerable time for their homes to be repaired or rebuilt.

The death toll from the disaster stood at 220 as of Saturday afternoon, according to the prefectural government.

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