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COVID-19 hits S. Korean peacekeeping unit in South Sudan

All News 14:31 March 21, 2022

SEOUL, March 21 (Yonhap) -- A member of South Korea's military contingent in South Sudan has tested positive for COVID-19, with 13 others listed as suspected cases, a Seoul official said Monday.

The service member has recently been confirmed to have contracted the virus, while the others tested positive in their rapid virus tests, the official at the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said. All have received booster shots.

The number of confirmed infections is expected to rise as the rapid test has an accuracy rate of around 98 percent.

The troops in question are among the 140 troops that have recently arrived in the African country to join the 260-strong peacekeeping contingent for a six-month mission.

Despite the virus outbreak, the unit maintains a full mission capability, the JCS official said.

South Korea has around 1,000 troops stationed overseas, including the Akh unit in the United Arab Emirates, the Dongmyeong unit in Lebanon, and the Cheonghae unit on anti-piracy missions off the coast of Africa.

Meanwhile, the South Korean military reported 1,549 additional COVID-19 cases on the day, raising the total caseload among its domestic personnel to 55,886.

The new cases included 999 from the Army, 213 from the Navy, 177 from the Air Force and 82 from the Marine Corps. Currently, 14,636 military personnel are under treatment.

Troops of the Hanbit Unit, tasked with peacekeeping operations in South Sudan, arrive at Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, in this file photo taken on June 3, 2020. (Yonhap)

Troops of the Hanbit Unit, tasked with peacekeeping operations in South Sudan, arrive at Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, in this file photo taken on June 3, 2020. (Yonhap)

colin@yna.co.kr
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