North Korea reported today the detection of an “acute intestinal epidemic” around the city of Haeju, in the southwest of the country, at a time when the hermetic Asian state is also fighting a wave of covid.
The state news agency reported that the leader himself Kim Jong-un sent this Wednesday “medicines prepared by his family” to the area of the country affected by this enteric disease about which no further details have been offered.
Contagious gastrointestinal diseases can be caused by bacteria, as in the case of cholera or typhoid fever; by parasites, such as giardiasis; or by viruses such as hepatitis A or rotavirus. They originate from the consumption of water and food contaminated with fecal matter and can be transmitted from one person to another.
The existence of enteric diseases is very common in North Korea where many places do not have adequate water sanitation systems.
The photo accompanying the KCNA story shows Kim Jong-un and the North Korean first lady, Ri Sol-ju checking medicines sent to the affected area, which includes the city of Haeju, capital of South Hwanghae province, and the adjoining county of Kangryong, both on the western sea border with South Korea.
According to KCNA, Kim ordered local officials to do their utmost to cure the sick and “quarantine those suspected cases to thoroughly limit their spread.”
Currently North Korea It also suffers from a wave of covid that the country officially identified on May 12 for the first time since the pandemic began.
According to data published today, the country yesterday detected some 26,000 “fever cases” (a term used to refer to suspected cases, given its limited capacity to test), and believes that some 4.5 million people may have contracted covid since the end of April, of which only 46,000 remain in treatment.
These data point to an unusually fast transmission of the virus and excessively low mortality, for which the World Health Organization (WHO) has asked the regime to share more data to know the true extent of the wave.
South Korean intelligence services have indicated that many of these “fevers” may be other diseases, such as measles or, precisely, typhoid fever.