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(LEAD) New virus cases stay below 30 for 2nd straight day

All News 10:43 April 14, 2020

(ATTN: CHANGES headline, lead; ADDS more info in 5th para, from 8th para; UPDATES 2nd para)

SEOUL, April 14 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's new coronavirus cases stayed below 30 for the second straight day Tuesday, but health authorities are still staying vigilant over imported cases and cluster infections.

The 27 new cases, detected Monday and slightly up from 25 a day ago, brought the nation's total infections to 10,564, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

Tuesday's new virus cases also mark a sharp drop from the Feb. 29 peak of 909 new cases. The country's daily number of new virus cases has been below 50 in the last six days.

But health authorities remain on high alert over new cases coming from overseas as well as cluster infections at churches and hospitals. They are also keeping an eye on those who retested positive for COVID-19.

Of the 27 new cases, 12 were from overseas.

The nation's death toll from the new coronavirus, which emerged in China late last year, rose by five to 222, according to the KCDC.

The number of patients released from quarantine after making full recoveries reached 7,534, up 87 from a day earlier.

Medical workers in protective gear speak to each other before starting their work at Keimyung University Dongsan Medical Center in Daegu, 300 kilometers southeast of Seoul, on April 13, 2020. (Yonhap)

The southeastern city of Daegu, the nation's worst virus-hit region, added three new cases. Its surrounding North Gyeongsang Province reported five new cases.

The total number of cases reported in Daegu and North Gyeongsang Province reached 6,822 and 1,342, respectively.

Other major provinces and cities also reported infections, with Seoul and the surrounding Gyeonggi Province adding two and eight new cases, respectively.

The country detected seven new cases coming from overseas at border checkpoints. The total number of imported cases is now at 940.

Since April 1, South Korea has enforced a mandatory 14-day self-quarantine for all travelers coming from overseas to better contain imported cases.

Starting Monday, all arrivals from the United States have been required to be tested for COVID-19. Previously, only those with symptoms had undergone tests.

Seeking to reduce the daily number of new infections to below 50, South Korea has extended strict guidelines on social distancing by two weeks to Sunday.

The arrival lobby of the first terminal of Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, is quiet on April 13, 2020, as steps to restrict visa-free entry from 90 countries were implemented on the day in a bid to prevent virus inflow from abroad. (Yonhap)

kdon@yna.co.kr
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