All the people arriving in South Korea from the different countries will be required to undergo at least two weeks of quarantine for preventing the spread of the deadly coronavirus or COVID-19, the prime minister on stated on Sunday.
The Asian nation confirmed around 105 new coronavirus cases as of Saturday, taking the total to 9,583, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated on Sunday. Among the new reported cases, 41 were travellers who have come from outside that include South Korean citizens and one foreigner, the KCDC stated.
South Korea's fight against Coronavirus
The new mandatory isolation for all arrivals will go into effect on April 1, Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun said at a government meeting. "In order to effectively block entry for non-important purposes such as tourism, we will expand the compulsory quarantine measure to all foreigners coming in for short stays too," he said.
The policy will also apply to South Korean citizens. If foreigners do not have a residence in the country, they will be quarantined in government-designated facilities at their own expense, Chung added. Currently, people arriving from the United States have to spend two weeks in quarantine and those showing symptoms, like fever, are required to be tested for the coronavirus. Tighter rules, including a mandatory test and quarantine took effect on Thursday for visitors from Europe on long-term visas.
South Korea has installed "walk-through" testing stations at Incheon airport, the country's biggest, to meet the need for checks. The government said on Friday it would require all inbound flights to check passengers' temperatures starting from Monday and anyone with a temperature over 37.5 degrees Celsius (99.5 Fahrenheit) would be denied entry.
(With agency inputs)