Monday, February 24, 2020

S Korea: Thousands Queue To Buy Face Masks

Coronavirus: Thousands queue to buy face masks in South Korea

  • South Korea has highest number of coronavirus cases outside China, at 830 
  • City of Daegu is at the centre of the outbreak after disease spread among a cult 
  • Hundreds of people were pictured queuing up to buy face masks in the city
  • President Moon Jae-in declared a national 'red alert' on Sunday as daycare centres were shut, school holidays extended and public gatherings banned

Hundreds of people have been filmed queuing up to buy face masks in the city at the centre of South Korea's coronavirus outbreak. 
A long line of people snaked out the doors of a supermarket in the city of Daegu on Monday as people tried to protect themselves against the spread of the disease amid fears of a global pandemic. 
South Korea now has the largest number of confirmed cases outside of mainland China after infections spiked at the weekend, standing at 830 by Monday morning. 

Thousands of people queued out the doors of a supermarket in the South Korean city of Daegu in an attempt to buy face masks amid a coronavirus outbreak

Daegu is at the centre of South Korea's coronavirus outbreak after the disease began spreading among followers of a Christian cult in the city

The astonishing scenes outside the supermarket were captured by South Korean newspaper Maeil Shinmun.
More than 140 of South Korea's new cases were in and near Daegu, the city of 2.5 million people where most of the country's infections have occurred. 
Five of the deaths were linked to a hospital in Cheongdo, near Daegu, where a slew of infections were confirmed among patients in a psychiatric ward.

While officials have expressed hope they could contain the outbreak to the region surrounding Daegu, some experts noted signs of the virus circulating nationwide.
They pointed to a number of cases in the capital, Seoul, and elsewhere that were not immediately traceable.
'In Daegu, the number of new cases that are being confirmed by tests is quite large, and if we fail to effectively stem community transmissions in this area, there would be a large possibility (that the illness) spreads nationwide,' South Korean vice health minister Kim Gang-lip said.

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