S.Korea to parole inmates to reduce infections

The South Korean government says it will release more than 900 prisoners on parole on Thursday as a measure to curb coronavirus infections.

The Justice Ministry said the move is to ease overcrowding at correctional facilities across the country.

The ministry said criteria for early release will be relaxed for people with high infection risks, including the elderly and those with underlying conditions, as well as model prisoners.

It said prisoners convicted of sex crimes, child abuse and drunk driving will not be included.

This announcement comes after a mass infection at a detention center in Seoul. City officials say the number of related infections had surpassed 1,160 by Wednesday since the first case was found in late November.