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North Korean leader Kim Jong Un blamed his own government’s officials for failing to tackle the country’s surging Covid-19 outbreak and ordered his military to step in as the number of suspected cases in the country surged past 1.2 million in just four days since the outbreak was first reported.
According to the state-run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the country reported 392,920 new persons with “fever” and eight new deaths linked to the pandemic on Monday.
The state media is only reporting the number of cases with fever—one of many symptoms of Covid—as North Korea is believed to lack adequate supplies to carry out large scale testing.
Since the start of the current outbreak, North Korea has reported 50 fatalities linked to the virus.
At a Politburo meeting of the ruling party on Sunday, Kim blamed the “irresponsible work attitude” of his government and health officials for the country’s botched pandemic response, according to a separate state media report.
The North Korean leader said that the officials had failed to quickly distribute the state’s medicine reserves and ordered his military’s medical arm to get involved in handling the process.
Kim and other Politburo members also claim they carried out on-site inspections of several pharmacies in Pyongyang, where the North Korean leader found most shops in poor condition with some pharmacists not wearing proper medical gowns.
564,860. That’s the total number of people who are still actively being treated for their “fever” while 648,630 patients have recovered, according to KCNA’s report.
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