The Latest: S. Korea eases restrictions as virus cases drop

By The Associated Press

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea has reported its lowest daily virus tally in about a month as it began easing its tough social distancing rules in the greater Seoul area.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency says the 109 new cases added in the past 24 hours took the country’s total to 22,285 with 363 deaths.

It’s the 12th consecutive day for South Korea’s daily jump to stay in the 100s. The 109 additional cases are also the lowest daily tally since mid-August.

The government on Sunday relaxed its physical distancing guidelines in the Seoul metropolitan area, citing a downward trend in new infections and worries about public livelihoods.

Under new distancing rules that are formally effective from Monday for two-weeks, franchise cafes and bakeries are allowed to have customers drink and eat inside their shops while indoor gyms and after-school academics can reopen. A ban on dining at restaurants after 9 p.m. was also lifted.

These facilities are still required to impose some distancing rules like having visitors sit at least one seat apart from each other or wear masks.

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AUSTIN, Texas — Texas health officials on Sunday reported 1,840 new cases of the coronavirus and 47 additional deaths. The Texas Department of State Health Services said the total number of COVID-19 cases so far in the state is now at 659,434, while the death toll is now at 14,190. Health officials estimate that about 67,000 cases in the state are currently active. There were about 3,300 people with COVID-19 hospitalized in Texas on Sunday, health officials said. The number of hospitalizations has been decreasing since peaking July 22 at 10,893.

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Follow AP’s pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

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HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Arkansas health officials on Sunday reported 508 newly confirmed cases of the coronavirus and 12 additional deaths. The Arkansas Department of Health said the number of confirmed cases in the state is now at 69,050 and that there have been 976 deaths among those cases. As of Sunday there were about 370 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in the state, health officials said. And more than 62,000 people have recovered.

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JERUSALEM — Israel will reinstate a strict new countrywide lockdown this week amid a stubborn surge in coronavirus cases.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made the announcement in a televised …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Business

      

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