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S. Korea to tighten border controls as suspected cases of Omicron emerge
Updated: 2021-12-01 12:20:04 KST
NOW Korea for its part has YET TO CONFIRM its FIRST CASE of the OMICRON variant BUT investigations are UNDERWAY into a FEW SUSPECTED cases.
For more I have Kim Yeon-seung here in the studio.
Yeon-seung welcome.

Good morning

First Yeon-seung let's start off with the overall COVID-19 situation here.

Well as Soa updated us earlier,.. South Korea reached a new peak in terms of daily COVID-19 cases.
One expert says that South Korea may see double that tally in less than two months, 10-thousand daily cases by late January, if there are no changes to our current prevention measures.
He considered a number of factors, including the rate of increase in new infections, which has been climbing around 15 percent every week for the past three to four weeks.. to arrive to this conclusion.
Ironically enough,.. he also said that because South Korea was relatively succesful in their prevention efforts, the country is likely to take a harder hit when COVID-19 restrictions loosen up.
Take a listen to what he had to say.


"Countries in the west have seen much larger caseloads and spreads so far. So they have a higher proportion of people who have gained immunization after being infected. But since we've relatively succeeded in staving off infections, the toll we might take in the future may be far greater."

He added that the emergence of Omicron also has the potential to speed up this harrowing prediction.
Assuming that rolling back restrictions is not on the cards, vaccine protection and oral treatment remains key to battling this spread.

And on the topic of OMICRON do tell us a bit about KOREA'S SUSPECTED cases.

Yes, possibly. Well news just broke out about a confirmed Omicron patient having passed through Incheon International Airport before making his way over to Japan.
But I'll fill you in more on this later during our later talk.
First,.. South Korea has reported its first suspected cases of Omicron from a couple that had visited Nigeria and officials have reason to suspect that they were infected with Omicron, because Canada and Hong Kong have also seen Omicron infections in travelers from Nigeria.
Health authorities discovered that they had come into contact with and transmitted the virus to their teenage child and one of their acquaintances, so currently there are four people in South Korea who are suspected to have been infected with Omicron.
The test results that determine whether they're infected with this strain will come out Wednesday night, sometime around 9 PM.

Is Korea taking any further steps to address this new threat?

For starters,.. South Korea will tighten border controls.
The Blue House on Tuesday said in a written statement that President Moon jae-in had ordered officials to take necessary steps in order to fend off this new strain,..
because it has the potential to become a national health threat that could derail our containment efforts.
President Moon had ordered officials to strengthen prevention measures for incoming travelers, quickly modify test kits so it that can identify the Omicron variant, and cooperate with international bodies and experts to discuss an appropriate response.
As for travel restrictions, South Korea currently hasn't added any more countries to its no-fly list,.. but authorities said that they will extensively test for variants among foreign arrivals.

Right thank you for that update but do stay with us for our broader talks
Reporter : winning@arirang.com