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Omicron smashes North Korea's 'safety vacuum', 820,000 COVID-19 cases reported

Pyongyang [North Korea], May 15 (ANI): North Korea reported 15 new death from "fever" in the last 24 hours, taking the total tally of the deaths in the country to 42 in just three days, media reported on Sunday.

Sputnik News Agency reported citing KCNA that North Korea registered more than 296,000 new patients, totalling more than 820,000 people sick.

On Thursday, North Korea announced the first wave of COVID-19 cases in the country, as several citizens tested positive for the Omicron. According to the KCNA, an "unfamiliar fever" has been spreading in the country since late April.

On Friday, North Korea reported the first coronavirus deaths. At least six persons were confirmed dead yesterday in the country.

According to the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), top officials, including the country's leader Kim Jong Un, held a crisis politburo meeting to discuss the outbreak and announced they would implement a "maximum emergency" virus control system.

Quoting Kim Jong Un, the North Korean leader, the state-run KCNA news agency said that the country is facing the biggest challenge since the foundation of the republic over the spread of COVID-19.

According to KCNA, Kim said that the country must focus on implementing the anti-coronavirus measures and boost them to stop the spread of the disease, Sputnik News Agency reported on Saturday.

With this North Korea's coronavirus-free claim has come to an end, reported the Yonhap News Agency.

Reportedly in a meeting conducted to discuss North Korea's "most critical emergency" antivirus system that had been "firmly maintained" for more than two years, Kim pledged that the "unexpected crisis" shall be overcome. He further instructed all the officials to block every possibility to stop the spread of the virus.

Further, the North Korean leader ordered stricter vigilance along the borders on all fronts, the air, and sea to prevent a "safety vacuum" in the national defence of the country, reported the Yonhap News Agency. In addition, North Korean authorities stated that samples that were collected from patients suffering from fever indicated that they were identical to the omicron variant.

However, North Korea asserted that it has aimed to manage and also prevent the spread of the virus. It has further mentioned that it will provide treatment to the omicron-detected patients to "root out the source of transmission in the shortest period possible" the country's state media reported. (ANI)