North korea: Kim sends for help in a city confined

Corée du Nord: Kim envoie de l’aide dans une ville confinée

SEOUL | The north Korean leader Kim Jong-un has ordered that the sending of aid to Kaesong, a city located on the border Korean-confined, since July, to combat the coronavirus, announced on Sunday the official news agency KCNA.

The north Korean authorities have stated that they have instituted, in July, a state of emergency maximum at Kaesong after having discovered a possible case of contamination coronavirus which would be the first in the country.

KCNA reported that a train loaded with aid, including food and medicines, arrived Friday in this city.

“The supreme leader has ensured that emergency measures were being taken to provide food and medicines, after the city had been completely blocked, and this time, he has ensured that large quantities of rice and aid to be sent to the city,” said the agency official.

KCNA adds that Mr Kim is concerned about “day and night” by the fate of the inhabitants of Kaesong which continue, according to the agency, “their campaign to defeat the progression of the virus harmful”.

Last month, Pyongyang had announced that a defector of being a refugee in South Korea, three years ago, had returned secretly in North Korea on July 19, in “illegally crossing” the border is heavily monitored between the two countries.

The south Korean military has confirmed, at the time, that there was a “great possibility” that a defector has recently gone back to the North.

The man, who exhibited symptoms of COVID-19, has been placed under “a strict quarantine,” said the north Korean authorities, who have not formally confirmed if it had been declared positive.

If this was the case, this would be the first case officially recognized COVID-19 in North Korea. Until then, Pyongyang has claimed to have identified no cases of contamination. Experts formulate doubts about this.

North Korea has closed, at the end of January, its border with China, where appeared the virus. It has imposed harsh restrictions, placing thousands of people in solitary confinement.

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