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South Korea eases indoor mask mandate as COVID cases trend down

Requirement remains in place aboard public transportation and at hospitals

A woman sits without a mask at a shopping mall in Seoul on Jan. 30. The South Korean government acknowledges that the number of COVID patients might increase after the indoor mask mandate is eased.   © Reuters

SEOUL (Kyodo) -- South Korea on Monday lifted most of its mandatory rules for the wearing of masks indoors after more than two years, as the country is believed to have entered a downward trend in the COVID-19 pandemic.

People are now allowed to visit most indoor locations, including schools and gyms, without masks. But the mask mandate remains in place for public transport and locations such as hospitals, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said.

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