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WHO ships COVID-19 medical supplies to North Korea

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The WHO said in a weekly monitoring report that it has started the shipment of essential Covid-19 medical supplies through the Chinese port of Dalian for “strategic stockpiling and further dispatch” to North Korea.

Edwin Salvador, WHO’s representative to North Korea, said on Thursday that some items, including emergency health kits and medicine, have reached the North Korean port of Nampo after North Korean authorities allowed the WHO and other U.N. agencies to send supplies that had been stuck in Dalian.

“Consequently, we have been able to transport some of our items by ship to Nampo … (including) emergency health kits, medicines and medical supplies that would support essential health services at primary health care centers,” Salvador said. “We are informed that WHO items along with supplies sent by other U.N. agencies are currently still under quarantine at the seaport.”

While North Korea has yet to report a single case of COVID-19, outside experts widely doubt it escaped the illness that had touched nearly every other place in the world.

The North has told WHO it has tested 40,700 people for the coronavirus through Sept. 23 and that all the tests were negative. Those tested in the last week reported included 94 people with influenza-like illnesses or other symptoms and 573 health care workers, according to the WHO report.


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