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Deaths, Covid-19 cases in North Korea skyrocketed

North Korea today (May 14) announced that it recorded 21 more deaths from Covid-19 and more than 174,400 people nationwide with fever. North Korea is currently one of only two countries in the world that has not implemented Covid-19 vaccination.

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According to Reuters news agency, leader Kim Jong Un said that the spread of Covid-19 put North Korea in great disarray, he called for an all-out war to overcome the pandemic.

Earlier this week, North Korea acknowledged the outbreak of Covid-19 for the first time in the country after two years without a single case of the virus since the pandemic broke out. However, there is currently no indication that a testing or treatment campaign is underway.

Due to North Korea’s limited testing capacity, the published figures may represent only a fraction of the total number of infections, which can lead to thousands of deaths in one country, experts say. two countries do not have a Covid-19 vaccination campaign.

The Workers’ Party of Korea held an emergency meeting and heard reports that 280,810 people have been treated and a total of 27 deaths since a fever of unknown origin was detected at the end of April, the China Central News Agency North Korea Central Committee (KCNA) said.

KCNA quoted Kim Jong Un as saying at the meeting: “The spread of the malignant disease is a great disturbance to the DPRK since its founding.” The leader said the health crisis was caused by the lack of capacity and responsibility of party organizations in responding to the pandemic. However, the transmission can be controlled and North Korea must have confidence to overcome the crisis in the shortest time possible.

KCNA did not say whether the new deaths were due to Covid-19 but said the first death was due to the Omicron variant of the corona virus. Since the end of April, 524,440 North Koreans have shown signs of fever, including 174,440 cases detected yesterday.

According to Kee Park of Harvard Medical School, who has worked on healthcare projects in North Korea, the country tests about 1,400 people a week, which is not enough to survey hundreds of thousands of people with symptoms.

Hoai Linh

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