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Justice ministry shuts down building after reporting first COVID-19 case

All News 13:44 April 16, 2021

SEOUL, April 16 (Yonhap) -- An official at the Ministry of Justice has tested positive for the coronavirus, resulting in a shutdown of the entire ministry building Friday.

The official from the ministry's Prosecution Bureau was diagnosed with COVID-19 on Friday morning after displaying fever symptoms the previous day, the ministry said.

In a preemptive move, Justice Minister Park Beom-kye immediately issued a shutdown order for the entire ministry building located at the Gwacheon Government Complex in Gwacheon, south of Seoul.

The Ministry of Justice building at the Gwacheon Government Complex in Gwacheon, south of Seoul (Yonhap)

In addition, all ministry officials and employees were instructed to immediately leave the building, take coronavirus tests and wait at home for their test results.

Park himself took the coronavirus test after canceling his entire official schedule, including a planned visit to the ruling Democratic Party to cast a vote in its floor leader election.

It is the first time for the justice ministry to report a COVID-19 case among employees at the Gwacheon complex building. Late last year, the ministry came under fire for failing to properly cope with massive coronavirus outbreaks among inmates at some correctional facilities supervised by the ministry.

The infected ministry official, whose identity was withheld, reportedly contracted the virus from his or her family.

Earlier on Thursday, the ministry shut down the floor, where the Prosecution Bureau is located, and isolated all bureau officials after the infected official complained of fever symptoms.


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