No additional virus cases reported from defense ministry compound, Seoul-Washington training unit

No additional coronavirus cases have been reported among members of the Cyber Operations Command located at the defense ministry compound in Seoul and an Army unit taking part in the country’s key combined exercise with the United States, the ministry said Thursday.
On Wednesday, a civilian worker of the command tested positive following the infection of his wife, in the first COVID-19 case to be reported from the ministry premises since late June.
“We undertook virus tests for 46 command members who came into contact with the worker, and 40 individuals so far received negative test results,” a ministry official said, adding that the test results of the remainder are to released within the day.
The ministry wrapped up disinfection work at several facilities, and all of them will be back to normal operations by Friday at the latest, according to the official
The ministry also had about 540 service personnel and workers of the Army’s First Corps stationed in the city of Goyang, north of Seoul, tested following the infection of one of its civilian employees Wednesday.
The case forced hundreds of unit members into quarantine, sparking concerns over possible disruption of the ongoing Combined Command Post Training (CCPT) jointly staged by Seoul and Washington, as the Army unit is taking part in the training. It began on Aug. 18 and will run until Friday.
“All of the Army corps members tested negative. As a preventive step, however, around 130 troops continue to be in isolation,” the official said. “Key members for the exercise have not been exposed to the virus, and the exercise has been under way normally.”
Currently, a total of 992 service members are in isolation in accordance with the health authorities’ guidelines, and the military has quarantined an additional 3,307 people under stricter anti-virus schemes of its own as a preventive step.
As of 10 a.m. Thursday, the defense ministry reported 97 COVID-19 patients among military members.
Nationwide, the number of fresh COVID-19 cases has been on the rise at an alarming rate since mid-August. On Thursday, the country reported 441 new patients, which is a nearly six-month high, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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