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South Korea coronavirus cases surge due to church, hospital outbreaks

South Korea reported 142 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus, almost all linked to outbreaks at a hospital in Cheongdo county and a church in Daego city, bringing the national tally to 346.

Korea's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) designated both the city of Daegu, which has a population of 2.5 million people, and Cheongdo county, home to around 43,000 people, as "special care zones" on Friday as case numbers began to surge upwards.

Cases from the Cheongdo hospital jumped in the latest daily figures, with the total rising from 16 to 108 overnight.

Two cases were reported in Busan, the first in South Korea's second-largest city, while the Island of Jeju, a spot popular with domestic and international tourists, also recorded its first case.

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