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Ministry stands ready to protect Vietnamese in coronavirus-roiled S.Korea
The Saigon Times Daily
Monday,  Feb 24, 2020,18:19 (GMT+7)

Ministry stands ready to protect Vietnamese in coronavirus-roiled S.Korea

The Saigon Times Daily

Ambulances transporting confirmed coronavirus patients arrive at a hospital in Daegu, South Korea on February 23, 2020 – PHOTO: REUTERS

HCMC – Vietnam's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has taken steps to safeguard Vietnamese citizens in South Korea, where the new coronavirus is raging, with over 800 infections and at least seven deaths reported today.

The ministry has ordered the Embassy of Vietnam in South Korea to launch a round-the-clock hotline at 82 106 315 6618 for Vietnamese guest workers who need help.

The management authority of Vietnamese guest workers in the Northeast Asian country has also set up a hotline number at 82 103 248 6886 to provide assistance for those in need.

The embassy has made contact with people living in virus-struck areas to get latest updates on the situation and offer timely support.

It has advised Vietnamese people residing in the affected areas to follow the instructions of the local authorities to prevent the spread of the virus, known as SARS-CoV-2.

Some 200,000 Vietnamese people are living, studying and working in South Korea, including 18,502 in Gyeongsangbuk Province and 8,285 in Daegu, the country’s fourth-largest city, where the outbreak of the disease, officially called Covid-19 by the World Health Organization, has reached 763 cases as of Monday morning.

There are no reports of Vietnamese nationals being infected with the deadly virus in South Korea so far, according to the embassy.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in on Sunday put South Korea on the highest possible alert in its fight against the coronavirus, a move that empowers the government to lock down cities and adopt other sweeping measures to contain the fast spreading virus.

Many of South Korea’s coronavirus cases are in Daegu, which has essentially been placed in a state of emergency, though people are still free to enter and leave the city.

More than half of the infected people are either members of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, a secretive religious sect with a strong presence in Daegu, or their relatives or other contacts.

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