Officials imposed a ‘maximum emergency quarantine system’ following the first formally confirmed Omicron case in the country
North Korea has announced a national emergency after its first officially recognized Covid-19 outbreak, imposing harsh quarantine measures after long claiming it has kept cases to zero during the pandemic.
The ruling Workers’ Party of Korea “discussed the problem of coping with the quarantine crisis” during a meeting on Thursday, the state-run KCNA reported, with officials noting that the country is currently seeing its “most serious national emergency incident” since the global health crisis began in late 2019.
“The Politburo recognized that it was necessary to transition from the national quarantine system to the maximum emergency quarantine system in response to the current situation,” the outlet continued, adding that party leaders “criticized the ignorance, laxity, irresponsibility and incompetence of the quarantine sector, which did not respond sensitively to the increasing number of mutated virus infections around the world.”
Samples collected from patients in Pyongyang were confirmed to carry the Omicron BA.2 subvariant of the coronavirus, officials said, now believed to be the dominant strain in some countries. The number of infections was not disclosed.
Speaking during the meeting, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un called “completely block the spread of malicious viruses” and eradicate the outbreak “in the shortest time possible”, saying that the country “I will surely overcome the emergency” because of the citizens “high consciousness”
The government said it would impose stricter quarantine measures on “all institutions and all sectors of the country, including party, administrative and economic institutions at all levels”, although he did not specify exactly what the new emergency system would entail.
Although officials ordered similar heightened quarantines following suspected cases in the past, Thursday’s declaration marks the first public confirmation of a Covid-19 infection in North Korea, which has long maintained it has kept its cases to zero with harsh lockdowns. of borders and other containment policies.
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.