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Seoul City to ban personal gatherings of five or more people in greater Seoul area Updated: 2020-12-22 05:39:46 KST

South Korea reported 926 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, falling below one-thousand for the first time in six days after recording a record-high 1,097 cases the day before.
Of Monday's 892 cases that were locally transmitted more than 70-percent came from the capital region.
To prevent any further spread of the virus starting Wednesday, the Seoul Metropolitan Government has decided to ban all personal gatherings of five or more people in the greater Seoul area.

"This is the last chance to prevent the spread of COVID-19. From December 23rd to January 3rd, we prohibit all personal gatherings of five or more people in Seoul, along with the Gyeonngi-do Province and Incheon."

This means that only gatherings of up to four people are allowed both indoors and outdoors.
Violations of the rule could lead to fines for both the facility owner and those gathering together.
This is an even tougher measure than under South Korea's highest tier of social distancing, Level Three, which prohibits gatherings of 10 or more people.
Only weddings and funerals will still be allowed to hold up to 50 people the same as they could under the Level 2.5 social distancing.
The Korean government will also announce on Tuesday new measures that will be put in place for the upcoming Christmas holiday season.

"We expect the holiday season to cause the COVID-19 situation in the country to worsen. If contact with others is not minimized, this period could bring a much more serious outbreak."

The government added on Monday that at this rate of spread, the country could be seeing up to 1,200 daily cases later this week.
There were 24 deaths on Monday, the highest number of deaths in a single day since the outbreak began.
Bae Eun-ji, Arirang News.
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