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Steady stream of imported cases continues: health authorities

All News 13:57 April 02, 2020

SEOUL, April 2 (Yonhap) -- South Korea has continued to see a steady stream of new arrivals infected with the novel coronavirus despite tightening quarantine measures this week, public health authorities said Thursday.

Since Wednesday, all new arrivals have been required to undergo two weeks of self-isolation, as the country has reported a rise in imported cases.

On the first day of heightened screening for those coming into the country, 18 people tested positive for COVID-19, accounting for 20 percent of new cases reported on the day.

Since the first virus case emerged on Jan. 20, the country has reported 9,976 infections, of which 601, or 6 percent, were those who came from abroad.

South Koreans who arrived on a chartered flight from Italy head to a virus screening area at Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, on April 1, 2020. (Yonhap)

Data showed that arrivals from abroad made up 30.5 percent of the 1,383 infections detected here in the March 18-31 period.

Earlier cases from overseas centered on people coming from China and other Asian nations, but more recently, those from Europe, the Americas, the Middle East and Africa have been found to be infected.

The number of people arriving from North America infected with COVID-19 shot up this week, though the country began adopting stricter quarantine measure last week for arrivals from the United States.

In addition, all people in isolation must install a mobile app that allows authorities to monitor them in real time and ensure they are following the rules. The app also allows people to report their condition to public health workers.


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