South Korea has declared an “emergency period” in the capital city of Seoul until the end of the year as cases continue to spike, Seoul’s acting mayor Seo Jung-hyup said on Monday.
Under the new restrictions, public transportation is reduced by 20% after 10 p.m. and gatherings are capped at 10 people.
The city will also conduct regular Covid-19 tests on some 40,000 workers and users of nursing hospitals and daycare centers, Seo added. Stricter virus control measures will also be introduced to facilities such as religious centers and call centers.
Seo urged people to refrain from holding end-of-year gatherings, and for religious groups to turn to online services.
The Seoul metropolitan area will also be placed under Level 2 social distancing measures for two weeks, starting November 24.
Under Level 2 restrictions:
- Mask wearing is mandatory in all indoor facilities.
- Entertainment facilities such as clubs are prohibited.
- Restaurants are only permitted to do deliveries and takeout after 9 p.m.
- Gatherings will be limited to fewer than 100 people.
- Schools must operate at one-third capacity.
On Monday, South Korea reported 271 Covid-19 cases from Sunday, including 112 cases in Seoul, according to the Seoul government.