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A 2015 outbreak of MERS killed 38 people and sparked widespread panic across South Korea.

S. Korea reports first MERS case in three years

Sat, September 08, 2018 17:54

SEOUL, South Korea, Sept 8, 2018 (News Wires) - South Korea reported its first case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in three years, health officials said on Saturday.

A 61-year-old businessman was diagnosed with the highly contagious viral respiratory illness, according to officials at the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

He returned to South Korea Friday from a business trip in Kuwait where he stayed for three weeks, the KCDC said a statement.

"Authorities have traced and separated 20 people who have come in close contact with the infected person," KCDC head Chung Eun-gyeong told journalists.

They include medical staff, flight attendants and passengers of the plane the man flew back to South Korea on, she said.

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