Taiwan summons South Korean diplomat over coronavirus outbreak allegation

Seoul reportedly named Taiwan as location of community-wide virus outbreak

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File photo of MOFA spokeswoman Joanne Ou.

File photo of MOFA spokeswoman Joanne Ou. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) summoned South Korean representative officials Wednesday (Feb. 12) to correct allegations of a community outbreak of the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) on the island.

In Seoul, government officials had also named Taiwan as one of six Asian destinations South Korean travelers should avoid in order to keep the virus from entering the home country, CNA reported. The five others were Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.

When South Korea on Tuesday (Feb. 11) also named Taiwan as a location where a community outbreak of the virus had occurred, MOFA immediately told the Taiwanese office in Seoul to contact the authorities there and demand a correction.

On Wednesday morning, an official from the South Korean representative office was summoned to MOFA to hear the same request as well as an expression of regret, while the ministry spokeswoman said it would follow up with Seoul’s reaction.

By Wednesday, Taiwan had officially recorded 18 cases of novel coronavirus, mostly citizens who had visited Wuhan, as well as a family of four who most likely contracted the virus on a layover in Hong Kong during a trip to Italy.