Six wild boars found dead near the border with North Korea have tested positive for African swine fever, authorities said Wednesday, bringing the number of such cases to 496 in South Korea.
The carcasses were found in the eastern border counties of Hwacheon and Yeoncheon, near the central section of the heavily fortified border, according to the National Institute of Environmental Research, which is affiliated with the environment ministry.
Last year, South Korea mobilized hundreds of soldiers and civilians to hunt down wild boars near the border to try to contain the spread of African swine fever.
In May last year, North Korea reported its first outbreak of the disease, at a farm near its border with China, to the World Organization for Animal Health. It remains unknown how the virus made its way into South Korea.
The animal disease does not affect humans but is deadly to pigs. There are currently no vaccines nor cures for the disease.
South Korea, Asia's fourth-biggest consumer of pork, has slaughtered and buried more than 153,000 pigs since Sept. 17 when the country reported the first case of the animal disease at a pig farm in the western border city of Paju. (Yonhap)