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Japan considers supporting North Korea in dealing with COVID-19

Providing medicine to people, preventing the spread of the disease in Pyongyang, North Korea, May 16. (Photo: AP)

Speaking at an event in Niigata city, Foreign Minister Hayashi said that Tokyo needs support North Korea Although there is no formal diplomatic relationship between the two sides.

Mr. Hayashi emphasized that, if the outbreaks are not resolved, a new variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus may emerge and spread to the world. “The whole world needs to face this problem,” he said.

Earlier this May, North Korea confirmed its first case of COVID-19 since the pandemic broke out around the world more than two years ago.

On May 22, North Korea recorded about 186,000 case of fever, bringing the total number of cases with this sign since the end of April to more than 2.64 million cases. In the 24 hours to 6 am on May 21, the country recorded one more death, bringing the total number of deaths to 67 cases, the Korean Central News Agency said.

Earlier, on May 16, South Korea’s Unification Ministry announced that it had proposed to hold a working-level meeting with North Korea to assist its northern neighbor in dealing with the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. first.

The announcement stated that the South Korean government has passed an official message to Pyongyang through the liaison office to cooperate in responding to the epidemic. Accordingly, the Ministry of Unification of the Republic of Korea conveyed the message of Minister Kwon Young-se to the Head of the Working Committee of the Korean United Front Kim Yong-chol at 11 a.m. on the same day.

Japan considers supporting North Korea in dealing with COVID-19 - Photo 1.

Raising public awareness of COVID-19 prevention measures in Pyongyang, North Korea on May 17, 2022. (Photo: AP)

South Korea’s Unification Ministry emphasized: “Regarding the COVID-19 outbreak caused by the Omicron variant, we propose to hold an inter-Korean working-level meeting to discuss the aid of vaccines and medicines. , masks and test kits, and is ready to share anti-epidemic experiences and cooperate in technical expertise.”

However, North Korea did not respond. Therefore, South Korea’s Unification Ministry urged Pyongyang to respond to Seoul’s proposal as soon as possible.

On May 18, North Korean state media reported that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un chaired a meeting of the ruling Workers’ Party of Korea to discuss nationwide anti-epidemic measures and urged officials stabilized the epidemic situation after North Korea recorded its first case of COVID-19.

According to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), at the meeting, leader Kim Jong-un criticized some units for not giving an appropriate response to the COVID-19 outbreak in the early stages. According to Kim Jong-un, the “immaturity” in dealing with the epidemic from the early stages and the insensitive response of the units have revealed “weaknesses” in the fight against the epidemic. He called on officials to make more efforts to stabilize people’s lives, stressing the need to “organize work more closely to meet living conditions and provide daily necessities.” for the citizen.

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