1,777 members from Shincheonji Church of Jesus, in Daegu, have been tested positive for Covid-19.
However, over 3,000 Shincheonji church members refuse to cooperate with authorities. Some of these members have refused to receive treatment and some who even refused to do the diagnostic tests according to YTN News.
More than 1,700 have yet to be tested despite the quarantine order for Shincheonji church members being extended by 5 days.
Majority of the cases still linked to Shincheonji church. As of Mar 12, South Korea reports total number to 7,755 cases. A total of 61 patients have died from Covid-19 so far, mostly elderly with pre-existing medical conditions.
Of these, most are linked to Shincheonji church in the city of Daegu, Yonhap News reported.
Anger is running high in South Korea and Shincheonji, which has become so closely associated with the outbreak, is taking much of the blame.
Some of Shincheonji’s practices such as secrecy, the banning of health masks, praying in close proximity are said to have helped spread the disease among congregants.
Investigations on Shincheonji church leaders started early March, where leaders of Shincheonji Church face a murder probe and police investigations into other violations of the Infectious Disease and Control Act.
The leader of the religious sect, 88-year-old Lee Man-hee apologised and bowed to the public. He also vowed to cooperate fully with the government in the containment of Covid-19.
Health authorities had warned of a second wave of the outbreak, and recommended restrictions on public programmes to minimise its spread.