Moon calls for stern law enforcement to prevent quarantine interference
SEOUL, President Moon Jae-in on Friday demanded the health authorities act strongly against any move to impede the government’s efforts to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.
Moon called for “stern measures,” including criminal charges, for anyone who tries to “hamper epidemiological studies” while visiting Seoul city government’s office to check the city’s quarantine operations.
“If necessary, relevant laws should be enforced, including apprehension on site or seeking an arrest warrant,” he said.
His comments came after some local churches were accused of not cooperating with the state efforts to trace and isolate potential COVID-19 patients.
Earlier in the day, health officials launched a search operation at Sarang Jeil Church to secure the full list of its congregation. The church has emerged the second biggest cluster after the outbreak in the Shincheonji Church of Jesus this spring, with 739 cases traced to it. The authorities believe the list the church had given was not complete.
Pastor Jun Kwang-hoon of the church took part in a massive anti-government rally attended by approximately 20,000 people at Gwanghwamun Square, central Seoul, on Saturday, leading church members and his political followers from around the country. It is not known exactly how many of the church congregants participated in the event. Jun and several of his aides tested positive after the rally.
“The core principle” of the country’s efforts to fight against COVID-19 is, the president said, “swiftly detecting and testing close contacts and isolating the confirmed patients, but things that interfere with (those efforts) have been done systematically.”
He added, “Obstructive activities are done physically on the scene (of quarantine operations), or through all-out misinformation campaigns.”
Source: Yonhap News Agency