North Korea announces first death from coronavirus amid ‘explosive’ outbreak

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Seoul – North Korea announced an “explosive” attack. Corona Virus On Friday, with six deaths and 350,000 probable cases across the country since April, providing a glimpse of how quickly the virus could spread within a country that still has to vaccinate its residents.

Just a day after the country admitted that the coronavirus had finally arrived, state media described the outbreak as a “public health crisis”, although its full extent remains unclear. North Korea’s weak immunity to the virus and poor healthcare infrastructure have raised experts’ concerns that it could become The epicenter of the new variables.

North Korea’s latest announcement highlights its vulnerability to the highly contagious BA.2 omicron subfactor, which has been responsible for severe mutations of the COVID-19 virus in South Korea, the United States and elsewhere around the world. vaccinated very effective in preventing serious infections and death from omicron, but North Korea is one of the only two countries in the world without a vaccine program.

North Korea acknowledges the outbreak of the Corona virus for the first time

Nearly 190,000 people are still in quarantine, North Korea’s Central News Agency said Friday, while 162,000 have recovered from more than 350,000 who showed symptoms of fever. The agency said that one of the six people who died had tested positive for the virus Bachelor’s degree 2.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who ordered the country’s closure after the first official infection with the Corona virus was announced Thursday, was quoted by the Korean Central News Agency, acknowledging that the spread of the infection was a “serious sign of loopholes in our epidemic control system.” The authoritarian leader appeared in public wearing a face mask for the first time on Thursday.

For more than two years, with the epidemic spreading across the world, North Korea has maintained that it is free of infection. But experts say the virus was likely circulating in the country long before Pyongyang’s official announcement this week.

According to a report issued by a panel of experts convened by the Washington Center for Strategies and Strategies International Studies.

It has drastically reduced overland trade along its border with China, its largest trading partner, which has greatly affected the availability of food, supplies, and money. North Korea has banned diplomats, tourists and humanitarian aid groups from entering the country.

“Most North Koreans are chronically malnourished and unvaccinated, there is hardly any medicine left in the country, and the health infrastructure is unable to handle this epidemic,” said Lina Yun, senior Korean researcher at Human Rights Watch.

North Korea, which is facing its first outbreak of the coronavirus, remains one of two countries without any vaccines

Pyongyang has also repeatedly rejected Seoul’s offers of assistance. South Korean President Yun Seok-yeol on Friday announced new plans to provide vaccine and medical aid to North Korea, his spokeswoman Kang In-sun said. Yoon’s office said the planned aid was not provided at North Korea’s request, adding that it would seek to consult with North Korea on how to deliver it.

Chinese Foreign Ministry Thursday said It is ready “to do everything in its power to provide support and assistance to the DPRK in fighting the virus,” although it is unclear whether North Korea will accept help along the border due to its concerns about the virus being transmitted via shipments from China.

Cheong Seong-chang, a North Korea analyst at the Sejong Institute in Seoul, said the omicron variable would cause “chaos” in North Korea for up to a year.

“Currently, North Korea is not expected to accept coronavirus aid from abroad, especially from the Western world,” he said.

Cheung said that despite the outbreak, North Korea is unlikely to abandon its plans to test missiles and nuclear weapons, which could be used to boost public morale amid a health crisis.

On Thursday, North Korea, hours after announcing the first outbreak of the coronavirus, fired three short-range ballistic missiles off its east coast, according to the South Korean military.

Seoul’s National Security Bureau criticized the tests in a statement Thursday, saying that North Korea “turned a blind eye to the lives and safety of its people and continued its ballistic missile provocations” despite the rapid spread of the virus.

Michelle Yi Hee Lee in Tokyo contributed to this report.