South Korea extends coronavirus restrictions around Seoul

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Seoul, Jan. 2, 2021 With the Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) resurging in and around South Korea’s capital, authorities on Saturday decided to maintain current restrictions on public life until Jan. 17, the Yonhap news agency reported.

Restrictions will remain at their second-highest level, 2.5, in the Seoul area, as well as Incheon and Gyeonggi provinces.

All daily routines, except vital social and economic activities, are restricted and gatherings of 50 or more people are banned, while businesses such as gyms, karaoke bars, concert and dance venues will have to close.

Restaurants can serve guests only until 9 p.m., at which point cinemas, beauty salons, and large stores must close and public transport operates at reduced capacity.

Meanwhile, the ban on private gatherings of five or more people, which has been in place for the greater Seoul area, was extended to the rest of the country, which has been placed under Level-2 restrictions.

The country reported 824 more COVID-19 cases on Saturday, raising the total caseload to 62,593, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).

A further 25 people died in connection with the disease, bringing the death toll to 942.

The latest infection count marked a decrease from 1,029 cases Friday, as the numbers of tests carried out was lower on New Year’s Day.

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