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(LEAD) N. Korea's new suspected COVID-19 cases below 4,000 for 2nd day: state media

All News 09:53 July 04, 2022

(ATTN: UPDATES with more info from 5th para; ADDS byline)
By Yi Wonju

SEOUL, July 4 (Yonhap) -- North Korea's new suspected COVID-19 cases stayed below 4,000 for the second consecutive day, its state media said Monday.

More than 3,030 people showed symptoms of fever over a 24-hour period until 6 p.m. the previous day, the official Korean Central News Agency said, citing data from the state emergency epidemic prevention headquarters.

It did not provide information on whether additional deaths have been reported.

The total number of fever cases since late April came to over 4.75 million as of 6 p.m. Sunday, of which more than 4.74 million have recovered, and at least 5,550 others are being treated, it added.

The country's daily fever tally has been on a downward trend after peaking at over 392,920 on May 15.

This photo, released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency on June 4, 2022, shows workers sterilizing the inside of a train in Pyongyang. North Korea reported about 79,100 new suspected COVID-19 cases on the day. (For Use Only in the Republic of Korea. No Redistribution) (Yonhap)

North Korea has taken "timely measures" to raise the level of mass immunity across the country and "defuse the current epidemic crisis," according to the KCNA.

"The state emergency epidemic prevention headquarters flexibly has adjusted the anti-epidemic degrees of relevant areas and actively controlled and managed the anti-epidemic situation by keeping a close eye on the nationwide anti-epidemic situation and comprehensively analyzing the emergence of new fever cases, collective immunity level and the supply of medication and the number of working health workers," it said.

The North is also ramping up measures to cement the "anti-epidemic wall since the cause and route of the malignant virus inroads into the country had been scientifically unraveled."

On Friday, the North claimed its coronavirus outbreak originated from "alien" objects in an area near the inter-Korean border, alluding to balloons often flown by North Korean defector groups in South Korea.

The South Korean government immediately dismissed the North's assertion, saying it was realistically impossible for the balloons to have carried the virus into the North.

North Korea disclosed its first COVID-19 case on May 12, after claiming to be coronavirus-free for over two years, and implemented nationwide lockdowns.

julesyi@yna.co.kr
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