Fifteen new deaths from 'fever' have been recorded in North Korea, three days after the country's first-ever case of COVID-19 was officially announced, the agency said on Saturday. official KCNA.
According to it, a total of 42 people have died, while 820,620 cases of fever have been reported, of which at least 324,550 are under medical treatment.
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un acknowledged on Saturday that the outbreak had caused “great upheaval” in the country. “The spread of a malignant disease is coming to upset our Korean country,” he said.
KCNA reported that “all provinces, cities and counties in the country have been totally locked down and the workplaces, production centers and residences have been closed.”
Although it has urgently activated its quarantine system in order to stem the spread of the disease among the 25 million inhabitants, none of whom are vaccinated, the country reports a large number of new cases every day.
Pyongyang announced on Thursday that people had tested positive for the BA.2 sub-variant of Omicron and announced his first death. Kim Jong-un had immediately ordered containment measures.
North Korea, which was one of the first countries in the world to close its borders in January 2020, after the appearance of the virus in neighboring China, has long boasted of its ability to keep the virus at bay. Until then, it had not reported any confirmed cases of COVID-19 to the WHO.
The country's health system — one of the worst in the world — is failing and lacks medicines and of essential equipment, according to experts.