Concerns for South Korea’s capital Seoul intensified on Wednesday (August 19) as coronavirus infections increased by triple-digits for the sixth straight day.
At least 297 new cases were reported, the highest daily rise since early March.
The majority of those are related to the Sarang Jeil Church - which officials worry could lead to broader outbreaks.
Some members of the church, which is run by a radical conservative preacher, are reluctant to come forward and get tested, or to self-isolate, officials have said.
Here's the country's vice minister of health and welfare, Kim Kang-Lip
"...We also see the spread of infections at related churches and workplaces in capital area and other various regions."
South Korea has been widely praised for its efforts in tracking outbreaks, with Seoul’s 25 million inhabitants only suffering localized clusters so far.
The government ordered the closure of nightclubs, karaoke bars and buffets earlier this week, as well as banning all in-person church services.
Indoor and outdoor gatherings are also restricted to no more than 50 and 100 people respectively.