[WORD_ON_THE_WEB] 'The mask policy makes no sense'

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[WORD_ON_THE_WEB] 'The mask policy makes no sense'

The incoming government plans to review the outdoor mask-wearing rule next month.
Ahn Cheol-soo, head of the Covid-19 Emergency Task Force, declared that the committee will publish a 100-day Covid roadmap. He added that the committee plans to decide on the outdoor mask mandate “based on the situation in late May.”
Ahn commented, “when the number of new cases in Korea comes down to the level of developed nations abroad which are lifting their outdoor mask rules, it will be the proper time for a change.”
He added that as Korea has considerably more new cases, it was premature to compare the situation with other countries.
However, the current government has said it plans to review the mask mandate on April 29.
Son Yong-rae, a senior epidemiological strategist, remarked that “it’s consistent with the previously announced plans from the government.”
He added that the government will “consider the transition committee’s viewpoint before deciding the matter, along with other various opinions.”
“The policy makes no sense. We have to wear masks outdoors where there’s almost no chance of infection and take them off in places like restaurants where the chance of droplet infections are crazy.”
“One more month of this? That’s nonsense. Let us take the masks off, even if it’s only outdoors.”
“Isn’t it a bit early to take off masks? I understand the frustration, but I think we should watch where the next few months take us.”
“This is a premature decision. There are still many new cases, and the reinfection rate is also high.”
“The government and the transition committee are saying two completely different things. Who should the people trust?”
“The transition committee’s plans and the current quarantine measures are completely different.”

BY LEE SI-YEOUNG, YOO JI-WOO [yoo.jiwoo@joongang.co.kr]
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