South Korean president convenes emergency meeting on MERS

World Today

Workers spray antiseptic solution on the arrival lobby amid rising public concerns over the spread of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), at Incheon International Airport in Incheon, South Korea, Wednesday, June 3, 2015. South Korea on Tuesday confirmed the country’s first two deaths from MERS as it fights to contain the spread of a virus that has killed hundreds of people in the Middle East. (Shin Jun-hee/Yonhap via AP) KOREA OUT

South Korean President Park Geun-hye convened an emergency meeting on Wednesday to discuss measures to contain the spread of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), that has already claimed the lives of two South Koreans.

“We are gathered here today because our government felt the need to make clear the various problems (regarding MERS) occurring these days, to find ways to handle the public’s anxiety and come up with countermeasures through this emergency meeting,” Park said. “We must prevent the disease from further dispersing so as to bring safety (to our nation).”

Park held the meeting with government officials including the South Korean Health and Welfare Minister Moon Hyung-pyo and other related civilian specialists.

They discussed the current situation concerning the MERS virus and reviewed the health ministry’s comprehensive plan to tackle the virus. The opinions of civilian experts in the field were also taken into consideration.

The meeting came as South Korean hospitals began setting up temporary quarantine zones within the hospitals on Wednesday to stop the further spread of MERS.

Meanwhile, the South Korean Health Ministry said the number of infected patients had risen to 30.

Compiled from Associate Press