(ANSA) – SEUL, 11 AUG – North Korean leader Kim Jong-un today proclaimed a “resounding victory” over Covid-19, after almost two weeks without any officially registered case in the country.
Presiding over a meeting with health professionals and scientists, Kim welcomed this “victory in the war against malignant pandemic disease,” according to the official KCNA news agency. “The victory won by our people is a historic event that once again showed the world the greatness of our state, our indomitable tenacity and the beautiful national customs we are proud of,” added the North Korean leader.
Kim’s influential sister accused South Korea of causing the Covid-19 epidemic in her country and threatened “retaliation”. Kim Yo-jong has railed against the sending of propaganda leaflets via balloons from the South calling it a “crime against humanity”, reported the official KCNA news agency. Kim’s sister said that many countries and the WHO have recognized “the danger of spreading an infectious disease by coming into contact with contaminated objects: it is very worrying that South Korea is sending flyers, money, brochures and dirty items to our region. “, he added. Kim Yo-jong warned that Pyongyang is considering “a strong retaliation”, adding that if the balloons continue “we will respond by eradicating not only the virus, but also the South Korean authorities”.
North Korea, one of the first countries in the world to close its borders in January 2020 after the virus emerged in neighboring China, has long prided itself on its ability to defend itself against the virus. Pyongyang announced its first coronavirus case on May 12, and Kim Jong-un took personal action in the fight against the epidemic. Since July 29, Pyongyang has not reported any new cases. North Korea has recorded nearly 4.8 million infections since the end of April, with just 74 deaths and an official death rate of 0.002%, according to KCNA. Hospitals in the country are notoriously poorly equipped, with few intensive care units and no treatment or vaccine available for the coronavirus, experts say. (HANDLE).