The Ministry of Justice on Thursday apologized for the spiraling COVID-19 outbreak at the Dongbu correctional facility in Seoul.
“We once again apologize to the public, that such an incident occurred at the Seoul Dongbu Detention Center due to our lack of preemptive measures and the limitations of detention facilities.”

This comes as the facility as of Thursday has seen a total of 792 cases, with 771 inmates and 21 facility workers infected.
Another person has died, bringing the number of deaths linked to the outbreak to two.
But the outbreak at the detention center didn’t stay behind bars.
It has also spread to some of the workers’ family members, bringing the total cases linked to the outbreak to 837 so far.
This is the biggest cluster infection from a single facility that the country has seen.
Officials attribute this dire outbreak to the dense population and the poor ventilation of the facility.
The Ministry of Justice has decided to take drastic preventive measures to curb the outbreak.

“We will raise social distancing to level 3 in all correctional facilities. Inmate services like face-to-face education will be completely restricted. There will be minimal contact among inmates and lawyer visitation will also be limited.”

This measure will take effect immediately and last until January 13th.
Regular visitors are completely banned and lawyer visitations are banned except in certain circumstances.
Workers are also not allowed to leave the facility and cannot return home for two weeks.
Also to lower the population of the prison, model inmates will be reviewed for parole, while some will be sent to other facilities.
Kim Yeon-seung, Arirang News

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