Hong Kong university students on exchange in South Korea faces Mers outbreak

Hong Kong university students on exchange in South Korea faces Mers outbreak

More than 80 exchange students from Hong Kong are in South Korea, doing their best to stay focused on exams instead of Mers

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Masks are not very common in South Korea.
Masks are not very common in South Korea.
Photo: AP

Hong Kong's Security Bureau announced a "red" alert for travel to South Korea yesterday amid an outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome (Mers).

Hong Kong universities have cancelled upcoming trips to the country and have sent emails to exchange students, urging them to be careful and offering support.

More than 80 students from Hong Kong are currently in South Korea on exchange programmes. There are 32 students from Chinese University, 30 students from Hong Kong University, 10 from Baptist University, and 10 from the Institute of Education.

Cherry Leung Gee-wai, an third-year HKU student who has been in Busan since February, said she is worried about the rising number of cases but will stay in the country until next week to finish her exams.

Just one of her 10 Hong Kong friends also on exchange will return to Hong Kong this week.

"When I talk to my Korean friends, they just say they have heard about Mers but are not worried about it," said Leung. She estimated that 70 per cent of people in Busan do not wear masks and she would feel weird wearing one.

One man in Busan was diagnosed with Mers three days ago, sparking concern that the disease will spread in the southern city.

As of yesterday, Mers had killed seven South Koreans and infected 95 others. More than 1,900 schools have been temporarily closed.

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
University trips toS Koreacancelled

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