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(LEAD) 4 more American workers on Yongsan base test positive for coronavirus

All News 22:25 January 14, 2021

(ATTN: CHANGES headline, lead; UPDATES with the latest tally throughout)

SEOUL, Jan. 14 (Yonhap) -- Four American civilians working at U.S. Forces Korea (USFK)'s Yongsan garrison in central Seoul tested positive for the new coronavirus on Thursday, the U.S. military said.

The USFK said on its Twitter account that four people tested positive with the COVID-19 virus, in addition to seven cases reported a day earlier.

One of the four positive cases split time between Yongsan garrison and Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, some 70 kilometers south of Seoul, it added.

The seven cases include one U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) employee and four contractors, who work together on the base. They have been in isolation after coming into direct contact with their colleague who earlier tested positive for COVID-19, according to the USFK.

The sixth case is the spouse of one of the contractors, who works at a separate location inside the base, the USFK said.

The seventh is a civilian DoD worker who does not have a direct relationship with the other six patients, according to the U.S. military.

All seven people are currently in isolation at their off-installation residences while awaiting transportation to a medical facility in Camp Humphreys, it added.

"KDCA and USFK health professionals are actively conducting contact tracing to determine whether anyone else may have been exposed, and to identify and ensure all known on-post and off-post facilities visited by the individuals are thoroughly cleaned," USFK said in a statement.

USFK banned "all leisure travel" to the Yongsan garrison from Tuesday through Saturday for contact tracing and other necessary antivirus measures.

The latest cases raised the total number of infections among USFK-affiliated individuals to 594, most of whom tested positive upon arrival in South Korea from the U.S.

In this file photo, an employee of the U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) is on duty at the entrance of the U.S. Army's Yongsan Garrison in Seoul on March 31, 2020. (Yonhap)

graceoh@yna.co.kr
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