South Korea Moves to End Most COVID Restrictions

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  • South Korea announced Friday that it will drop most coronavirus pandemic-related restrictions next week, including the midnight curfew on businesses, as the omicron surge shows signs of waning
  • Health authorities in the country said that starting April 18, the government will scrap the midnight curfew on restaurants and other businesses as well as the cap on private gatherings and religious assemblies
  • However, South Korea's Prime Minister Kim Boo-Kyum told a coronavirus response meeting that indoor use of face masks would still be required to curb further spread of the virus
  • Kim noted further that the government will review whether to lift the existing restrictions, including outdoor face mask use, in the coming weeks depending on the situation with the virus
  • The country has managed to curb deaths and severe cases via massive vaccinations. Nearly 87 percent of the country's population of more than 52 million people are now fully vaccinated, with 64 percent having also received booster shots