North Korea may have received medical supplies from China


North Korea has reportedly received medical supplies from China to deal with an explosive rise in fever cases possibly caused by the coronavirus.

Informed sources told NHK that three transport planes from the North’s flagship carrier, Air Koryo, arrived in the northeast Chinese city of Shenyang on Monday morning and returned to North Korea in the afternoon.

The three Ilyushin-76 planes are said to have carried medical supplies from China.

The plane was used to transport leader Kim Jong Un’s car when he attended a summit with then-US President Donald Trump in Singapore.

Kim ordered his officials to take steps to contain the spread of infections, as China has done under its zero COVID policy.

He apparently sought support from China because the health system in the North is said to be poor.

North Korea confirmed more than 269,500 new cases of fever between 12 p.m. and 6 p.m. Monday. The total number of confirmed fever cases in the country since the end of April has exceeded 1,483,000.

The ruling Workers’ Party newspaper Rodong Shinmun reported on Tuesday that military doctors gathered in Pyongyang after Kim Jong Un’s special order was issued.

The newspaper reported that after the rally, medical personnel were deployed to all pharmacies in the capital and started a round-the-clock operation to supply medicines.

The World Health Organization said on Monday that since North Korea has not yet started vaccination against COVID-19, the virus could spread rapidly without immediate and appropriate measures.


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