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UNICEF distributing humanitarian aid in N. Korea after quarantine release

All News 14:22 March 08, 2022

SEOUL, March 8 (Yonhap) -- The U.N. Children's Fund (UNICEF) said Tuesday it was distributing humanitarian supplies to health facilities in North Korea after their release from the reclusive country's quarantine measures against COVID-19.

The first batch of nutrition supplies for North Korea was released from months of quarantine at the western port of Nampo, following the reopening of its western sea routes in October last year, according to the agency's recent report.

"Humanitarian supplies recently released from quarantine and disinfection procedures are in the process of being distributed to health and nutrition facilities in collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health in DPRK," a UNICEF spokesperson said in an emailed statement, using the acronym for the North's official name, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea.

The supplies include micronutrient treatments for 160,000 pregnant women and new mothers, tuberculosis treatments and preventative medicines, as well as oral rehydration salts to treat diarrheal disease for at least 400,000 children, according to the spokesperson.

"This is an initial step towards addressing some shortages in essential items needed for children and women, and we hope this marks the beginning of a more regular supply operation," the official added.

The North has implemented strong border controls since early 2020 to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

In this March 2020 file photo captured from the website of North Korea's main newspaper, the Rodong Sinmun, workers disinfect cargo containers at the country's western port of Nampo. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

yunhwanchae@yna.co.kr
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