New Delhi: A day after North Korea for the first time officially reported a Covid-19 case, six people have died of fever with one of them testing positive for Covid-19, the state media reported according to the news agency AFP.
“A fever whose cause couldn’t be identified explosively spread nationwide from late April… Six persons died (one of them tested positive for the BA.2 sub-variant of Omicron,)” according to the Korean Central News Agency report.
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How many people are affected so far?
Around 187,800 people are undergoing treatment in isolation after a fever of unidentified origin has “explosively spread nationwide” since late April, stated the state media.
Around 350,000 people have shown signs of that fever, including 18,000 who newly reported such symptoms on Tuesday alone, KCNA said. The agency informed that around 162,200 of the patients have been treated so far, but did not specify the number of people testing positive for Covid-19.
Meanwhile, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un also visited the anti-virus command centre on Tuesday to review the situation and responses after the nuclear-armed nation declared “gravest state emergency” and ordered a national lockdown on Thursday.
He “criticised that the simultaneous spread of fever with the capital as the centre shows that there is a vulnerable point in the epidemic prevention system we have already established,” KCNA said.
No current plans to share vaccines with North Korea: US
The United States has no plans now to share Covid-19 vaccines with North Korea, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Thursday as per Reuters.
Stressing that North Korea had repeatedly refused vaccine donations from the COVAX global vaccine sharing project, the spokesperson said referring to the country by the initials of its official name, “While the US does not currently have plans to share vaccines with the DPRK, we continue to support international efforts aimed at the provision of critical humanitarian aid to the most vulnerable North Koreans.”