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Military joins disinfection efforts as S. Korea prepares for eased social distancing


The military is joining the government's all-out efforts to disinfect public facilities as South Korea prepares to further ease coronavirus social distancing, the defense ministry said Tuesday, amid a marked slowdown in the number of new cases reported in the country.

Starting this week, the military will look for education and welfare facilities as well as religious installations that require disinfection work and provide necessary support, the ministry said.

South Korea has been taking gradual steps to return to normal life as the country's new daily COVID-19 infections have visibly slowed. It reported 14 new coronavirus cases Tuesday, bringing the nation's total infections to 10,752, including 244 deaths.

The government plans to announce new guidelines against the virus by early May, including when and how to normalize school education disrupted by the pandemic.

"The ministry will use all available personnel and devices to protect our people's health, and put utmost efforts to return the 'space and daily lives lost' due to COVID-19 back to the people," the ministry said in a release.

The military has mobilized some 26,000 man-days since mid-February to disinfect facilities with large transient populations, such as hospitals and bus terminals, to prevent the spread of the virus, it said.

The number of virus cases reported in the military stood unchanged at 39, with one Navy sailor remaining under treatment as of early Tuesday. (Yonhap)