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North Korea lifts Covid lockdown amid ‘stable’ virus, media say


North Korea has withdrawn virus lockdown measures in its capital that had been in place for more than two weeks after leader Kim Jong Un’s policies reportedly brought the country’s first Covid-19 outbreak under control. According to diplomatic sources quoted by South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency on Monday (May 30), the Kim administration has partially lifted the lockdown in Pyongyang and reduced restrictions in “stabilized regions”.

Residents of Pyongyang have been allowed out of their homes for the first time since May 12 and businesses have gradually reopened, according to sources in the isolated state cited by NK News on Sunday.

Read also | For the first time, new cases of fever fall below 10,000 in North Korea

North Korea has refused to accept foreign aid in the face of the pandemic or verify any of its figures for the public health disaster, which could have overwhelmed the country’s aging medical infrastructure and jeopardized leadership. from Kim. Eritrea and Eritrea are the only two countries that have not vaccinated their citizens, which puts them at risk.

Kim lifted the lockdown hours after leading a Politburo meeting on Sunday, according to NK News. On the same day, the state’s official media said “the pandemic situation is being managed and improved across the country”, while another report claimed that daily cases had dropped by around 75% from a peak of 392,920 two weeks ago.

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“Temperature checks, hand sanitizer and following the instructions of pandemic response professionals” are still essential, according to NK News.

North Korea has not labeled the hundreds of thousands of fever cases “Covid” due to a lack of test kits to confirm the cases are linked to the coronavirus.

Read also | COVID-19: Experts express disbelief as North Korea reports incredible death rate of 0.002%

Kim has mobilized troops to try to stem the spread of what the government calls a “malicious” epidemic, and his propaganda machine has gone into overdrive to try to stop him. Mr. Kim has been described in state media as advancing pandemic control efforts and blaming any failures on cadres who failed to obey his orders.

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