North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un is decrying the “immaturity” of his nation’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak and said officials’ “non-positive attitude, slackness and inactivity” hindered efforts to control the virus, state media reported Wednesday.
North Korea has reported 1.7 million cases of “fevers” and more than 60 deaths since acknowledging the outbreak last week.
Mr. Kim, speaking at a Politburo meeting of the ruling Workers’ Party, said officials’ poor response increased “the complexity and hardships” in dealing with the virus.
North Korea claims it boxed out the virus during the first two years of the pandemic. Few persons are vaccinated, and its health system and economy are ill-equipped to deal with a health crisis.
Pyongyang has rebuffed South Korea’s offer to provide vaccines and other help, and China-style lockdowns would decimate the country’s ability to operate.
Mr. Kim told party members he thinks the nation will reach a positive turning point.
State media said the party “discussed the issue of continuously maintaining the good chance of winning on the overall anti-epidemic front by adjusting steadily and in a mobile way.”
For more information, visit The Washington Times COVID-19 resource page.