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(LEAD) Military postpones reserve forces' training again due to coronavirus

All News 10:44 April 29, 2020

(ATTN: UPDATES with latest info in last 3 paras)

SEOUL, April 29 (Yonhap) -- The military has decided not to hold regular training sessions for reserve forces in the first half of this year due to the new coronavirus, the defense ministry said Wednesday.

The training for the country's 2.75 million-strong forces was slated to kick off in June across the nation, after being put off twice from the original schedule in March due to COVID-19.

South Korean reservists are required to go through one training session of one to three days per year.

The ministry said it will make an announcement 45 days prior to the resumption of the training after evaluating the virus situation.

"We have decided not to hold training sessions in the first half considering the COVID-19 situation," the ministry said in a release. "The defense ministry will continue to take measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and fully prepare for a combat readiness posture."

The total number of coronavirus cases in the military stood at 39 on Wednesday, with the last infection reported in mid-March.

Nationwide, South Korea reported nine more cases of the new virus on the day, bringing the nation's total infections to 10,761, including 246 deaths. It marked the 11th day in a row that the number of new infections stayed at 15 or below.

Amid a marked slowdown in the number of new cases, the ministry on Tuesday lifted the designation of military hospitals in the central city of Daejeon and the southeastern city of Daegu as institutions specialized in infectious disease treatment.

In this file photo, taken March 5, 2018, members of the reserve forces engage in a street fighting drill at an Army unit in Seoul's Songpa Ward after they were mobilized to participate in the year's first mandatory exercise. (Yonhap)


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