South Korean drones urge virus vigilance

A drone performance in South Korea has urged people to stay safe and help overcome the pandemic.
A drone performance in South Korea has urged people to stay safe and help overcome the pandemic.

With masked spectators watching from below, hundreds of drones have lit up the night sky in South Korea's capital in a synchronised display to encourage citizens to remain vigilant against the coronavirus.

More than 300 drones flew in the performance above Olympic Park in southern Seoul, forming images of people wearing masks and spelling out messages thanking people and medical workers for the country's anti-virus gains.

The drones also displayed government slogans proclaiming a post-pandemic rebuilding of the country's economy.

The event was organised by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, which held a similar drone performance in July that was also coronavirus-themed.

South Korea reported 205 new coronavirus cases as of midnight on Friday, rising above 200 for the first time since September. The country's total number of infections rose to 28,338 with 492 deaths.

Of the new cases, 166 were domestically transmitted and 39 imported. More than 65 per cent of the locally transmitted cases were from Seoul and Gyeonggi province, a densely populated region near the capital.

South Korea began fining people who fail to wear masks in public on Friday as it reported 191 new coronavirus cases, its highest daily jump in 70 days and the sixth straight day of three-digit increases.

The steady spread of the virus has alarmed government officials, who eased social distancing measures to the lowest level since October to soften the pandemic's shock on the economy.

While this has allowed high-risk venues such as nightclubs and karaoke bars to reopen, Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun said the virus' continued spread could force the government to seriously consider tightening social distancing again.

AP with Reuters

Australian Associated Press