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(LEAD) Another soldier tests positive for new virus, total at 52

All News 15:01 May 26, 2020

(ATTN: RECASTS lead with official attribution; ADDS latest info in paras 3-4)

SEOUL, May 26 (Yonhap) -- An Army soldier set to end his military service soon has tested positive for the new coronavirus after visiting the southeastern city of Daegu for vacation, the defense ministry said Tuesday.

The sergeant, the military's 52nd coronavirus case, is currently at a civilian hospital and will be discharged from the military without returning to his base after using up his remaining vacation days, according to the ministry.

The ministry earlier said he took the virus test after realizing that some of his visits overlapped with those of a virus patient but later clarified that exactly how he contracted the virus is not yet known.

"The soldier visited Daegu for vacation. But the exact infection route is yet to be confirmed. Contact tracing is now under way," the ministry said in a release.

Of the total infected personnel reported in the military so far, 39 have fully recovered.

On Tuesday, South Korea reported 19 more cases of the new coronavirus, raising the nation's total caseload to 11,225. It marked the second day in a row that the number of new cases stayed below 20.

Soldiers board a train at a station in Paju, north of Seoul, on May 8, 2020, as they were allowed to go on vacation after more than two months of restrictions amid fears about the spread of the new coronavirus. The military began to lift the restrictions on vacationing the same day in line with the government's decision to end a weekslong, strict social distancing campaign amid signs of a slowdown in virus infections. (Yonhap)


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