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U.S. Marine in Virginia tests positive for coronavirus

FILE - In this Aug. 25, 2011, file photo, a U.S. Marine fires a heavy machine gun to counter Taliban fire from a nearby tree line in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan. The Marines departed in transport helicopters, their destination classified. Veterans of America's longest war are torn as the U.S. signs a potentially historic peace accord with the Taliban in Afghanistan. For many, the U.S. is overdue in withdrawing its forces after more than 18 years of fighting. Others are wary of the Taliban, whose hard-line government the U.S.-led forces overthrew in 2001. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)
FILE - In this Aug. 25, 2011, file photo, a U.S. Marine fires a heavy machine gun to counter Taliban fire from a nearby tree line in Helmand province, southern Afghanistan. The Marines departed in transport helicopters, their destination classified. Veterans of America's longest war are torn as the U.S. signs a potentially historic peace accord with the Taliban in Afghanistan. For many, the U.S. is overdue in withdrawing its forces after more than 18 years of fighting. Others are wary of the Taliban, whose hard-line government the U.S.-led forces overthrew in 2001. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File) (Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

A U.S. Marine assigned to Fort Belvoir in Virginia has tested positive for coronavirus and is hospitalized, Pentagon spokesman Jonathan Hoffman said Saturday.

Hoffman tweeted that the Marine, who he did not name, recently traveled overseas on official business and tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday. He is currently being treated at Fort Belvoir Community Hospital.

The announcement so far marks the first positive case for an American servicemember stationed in the US.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper and the White House have been briefed on the development, Hoffman said.

On Friday a US Navy sailor stationed in Naples, Italy, became the first US servicemember stationed in Europe to test positive for coronavirus. And in a separate case last month, a US soldier stationed in South Korea tested positive -- the first US servicemember to do so.

The US Army, Air Force and Navy are now screening new recruits for the novel coronavirus as part of a sweeping effort to prevent the virus from spreading among the armed forces.