The South Korean military has started enforcing tighter social distancing measures banning all low-ranking officials and cadets from taking vacations or off-site trips.
The measures will last from Friday until December 7th.
This is the fourth time this year that the military has enforced such a ban due to the coronavirus outbreak.
This current ban was sparked by sporadic cluster infections including clusters involving newly enlisted soldiers in Yeoncheon and an army unit in Cheorwon this week.
Up until now, cadets’ stationed in regions with social distancing levels of one.five or lower were allowed to take vacations and one-day trips to “safe” areas where there have been no confirmed COVID-19 cases in a week.
Vacations for senior military personnel, though, have been restricted since Tuesday.
The military’s level two.five social distancing measures mean service members can’t have private meetings or gatherings during off-duty hours.
In-person religious gatherings and business trips are also banned.
As for drills, necessary outdoor training will be conducted in a way to minimize contact with civilians while indoor training programs are to be limited.
Also, bringing in private guest instructors for various educational programs will be banned during this period.
Seoul’s defense ministry warned of heavy penalties for those who violate these restrictions and are found responsible for spreading the virus.
Since the start of the outbreak, the military has seen a total of 347 cases, of which 167 are still in treatment according to an official tally released on Friday.
Kim Ji-yeon, Arirang News.

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