SEOUL-- President Moon Jae-in on Tuesday stressed the need to prepare for additional earthquakes in the future, saying the country can no longer be considered safe from the natural disaster.

"We have once again clearly confirmed the fact that our country is no longer a safe zone from earthquakes," the president said in a Cabinet meeting held at the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae.

The reamrks came about a week after a magnitude 5.4 earthquake struck the southeastern city of Pohang, the second-most-powerful tremor recorded in the country following the magnitude 5.8 quake that hit nearby Gyeongju in September 2016.

"This means quake measures must be constantly taken and not only when there is an actual quake," Moon said, according to Cheong Wa Dae pool reports.

The president noted the government has been moving to expand the type and number of buildings required to have quake-proof designs, but that a great majority of facilities still remain vulnerable to earthquakes.

"Among such buildings, school facilities used by young children and private residences suffered greater damage. I believe an overall review of such vulnerable buildings and reinforcements to make them quake-proof are especially urgent," the president added.

The president also called for the development of new technologies that may help predict a quake before it takes place.

"As soon as its emergency repair efforts are completed, the government will completely review its quake prevention measures and come up with fundamental measures that can protect the lives and safety of the people," he said.

Regarding the latest outbreak of avian influenza, the president called for "swift" and "powerful" measures to prevent a further spread of the animal disease.

"The agriculture ministry is doing its utmost. But as we are now preparing for the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games, I ask all related government offices and local governments to further step up their efforts to eradicate the disease in the initial stage," Moon said.

The president also called for efforts to better protect female workers, citing a recent survey by the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family that shows nearly 80 percent of those who experienced sexual harassment at work simply moved on without even filing a report or complaint.

Of those who said they chose not to file a report, 48.2 percent said they did so because they did not think it would change anything, Moon noted.

"We must not tolerate sexual harassment or sexual assault at workplaces, but we certainly must not have a case where a victim decides not to file a report out of fear of additional injury," he said.

"Establishing a system and culture where victims can talk about their problems without any fear is more important than anything else."

Source: Yonhap News Agency