North Korea reports first COVID outbreak since pandemic began
Aljazeera says North Korea has confirmed its first outbreak of COVID-19, raising fears of a humanitarian disaster in one of the world’s only unvaccinated countries as it goes into a nationwide lockdown.
Authorities detected a sub-variant of the highly transmissible Omicron coronavirus variant, BA.2, in people in Pyongyang, the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Thursday, without elaborating on the number of confirmed cases.
“There has been the biggest emergency incident in the country, with a hole in our emergency quarantine front, that has been kept safely over the past two years and three months since February 2020,” the state broadcaster said.
It added that “maximum” control efforts were being imposed in Pyongyang.
It reported later that Kim Jong Un had “called on all the cities and counties of the whole country to thoroughly lock down their areas” with factories, businesses and homes closed down and reorganised “to flawlessly and perfectly block the spread vacuum of the malicious virus.”
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