The southernmost continent had its first cases reported in December 2020 Credit: Twitter image

The pandemic has finally reached every continent on Earth as even Antarctica, the last continent previously free from COVID-19, has finally reported new cases.

The southernmost continent had its first cases reported in December 2020, almost a year after the first cases of coronavirus were detected in China.

The Chilean army has reported 36 cases at its Bernardo O’Higgins research station on the Antarctic Peninsula. Out of the 36, 26 military personnel and 10 maintenance workers have been evacuated to Chile. In a statement, the Chilean army thanked the timely preventive action due to which it was possible to relieve their personnel. They after being subjected to PCR test came out positive for COVID-19.

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It was reported that three crew members on a ship providing support to the base have also tested positive since their return from their mission to Antarctica.

Research and military stations in Antarctica are among the most remote places in the world. They had gone to extraordinary lengths in recent months to keep the virus out, canceling tourism, scaling back activities and staff, and locking down facilities.

So far no other country with a presence in Antarctica has publicly reported any other cases.

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