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Itaewon cluster caseload rises to 79

Nation adds 35 new cases, 20 in Seoul


South Korea has so far identified a total of 79 novel coroanvirus cases linked to clubs in Seoul’s Itaewon district, in a new cluster of infections that has stoked fears of a resurgence of the virus here.

“As of 8 a.m. Monday, the accumulated caseload linked to the Itaewon clubs stands at 79,” Yoon Tae-ho, a senior Health Ministry official, said during the daily briefing on the virus.

Itaewon’s popular clubs and bars emerged as a new center of virus transmissions after a 29-year-old clubgoer residing in Yongin, Gyeonggi Province, tested positive last week after visiting five establishments during the early May holidays.

Nationwide, the country reported 35 new confirmed virus patients in 24 hours to 12:01 a.m. Monday. The total accumulated number of COVID-19 cases stands now at 10,909, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data.

Of the new cases, 29 were local infections, while six were imported cases.

Seoul reported the largest number of infections with 20, followed by Gyeonggi Province, North Chungcheong Province and Incheon, which saw four, three and two cases, respectively.

Health authorities reported no new deaths, with the death toll so far remaining at 256 for four days in a row.

By Park Han-na (