WORLD S. Korea puts 'no mask, no ride' policy into effect


S. Korea puts 'no mask, no ride' policy into effect


10:53, May 27, 2020

People, wearing protective face masks following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), stand at a bus stop in Daegu, South Korea, March 10, 2020. (Photo: Agencies)

South Korea began implementing its "no mask, no ride" policy on buses and taxis on Tuesday to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in public transportation.

As a result, taxi and bus drivers can limit or refuse passengers who do not wear face masks. Drivers will be required to wear masks when passengers are on board.

The policy was devised amid an emerging worry about infections on public transportation.

As of Sunday, nine bus drivers and 12 taxi drivers had been confirmed positive for COVID-19.

Meanwhile, subway passengers are strongly advised to wear face masks while on board.

South Korea had reported a total of 11,225 cases and 269 deaths as of Tuesday.

Meanwhile, A curfew in Colombo and the outskirts of Gampaha, imposed on March 24, has been relaxed.

A statement from the President's Office on Monday said that curfew would be effective on Tuesday in all districts of the country, including Colombo, for a shorter period of time daily, from 10 pm to 4 am, as there had been no new patients detected among the public within the past two weeks.

Sri Lanka has reported more than 1,100 cases, with 10 deaths.

Biggest jump

Separately, for a seventh consecutive day, India reported its biggest jump in coronavirus cases. The country's health ministry on Tuesday reported 145,380 new infections, an increase of 6,535 from the day before, and 4,167 deaths.

In the Middle East, many countries announced the further easing of the precautions against the novel coronavirus, as Eid al-Fitr, a festival marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, is being observed across the region.

In a related development, Saudi Arabia will end its nationwide coronavirus curfew from June 21, except in the holy city of Mecca, the interior ministry said on Tuesday, after more than two months of stringent curbs.

Prayers will also be allowed to resume in all mosques outside Mecca from Sunday, the ministry said in a series of measures announced by the official Saudi Press Agency.

Saudi Arabia has reported around 75,000 infections and 400 deaths, health authorities said.

In Bangladesh, authorities asked people to avoid mass prayers in open fields, which draw tens of thousands normally. Devotees could join prayers at mosques by maintaining safe distances.

The country had reported 36,751 cases with 522 deaths by Tuesday.

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