South Korea reports 142 more coronavirus cases, total 346 « Khabarhub
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South Korea reports 142 more coronavirus cases, total 346


22 February 2020  

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SEOUL: South Korea reported 142 more coronavirus cases Saturday, the sharpest spike in infections yet, with more than half of the new cases linked to a hospital in a southern city.

The national toll of 346 is now the second-highest outside of China, with the jump in cases at a hospital in Cheongdo following a similar spike among members of a religious sect in the nearby city of Daegu.

Among the new cases, 92 were “related” to patients or staff at the hospital in Cheongdo, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

Authorities reported another death on Saturday, taking the toll to two. Both victims had been inpatients at the hospital.

More than 150 members of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus have also been infected, starting with a 61-year-old woman who developed a fever on February 10 but attended at least four services at the church’s Daegu branch before being diagnosed.

The mayor of Daegu — South Korea’s fourth-biggest city, with a population of over 2.5 million — has advised locals to stay indoors, while access to a major US military base in the area has been restricted.

Cheongdo, some 27 kilometers south of Daegu, is the birthplace of Shincheonji’s founder Lee Man-hee.

County officials said Friday that a three-day funeral was held for his brother three weeks ago at a hall owned by the hospital.

Shincheonji is often accused of being a cult and claims its founder Lee has donned the mantle of Jesus Christ and will take 144,000 people with him to heaven on the day of judgment.

(With inputs from agencies)

Publish Date : 22 February 2020 16:04 PM

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