North Korean state media reported on Wednesday that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un condemned senior officials of the ruling party for failing to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, causing unspecified “serious incidents” and putting the country and people at risk.

South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency said that the North Korean Central News Agency’s report did not elaborate on what happened or how it put people at risk.

Kim Jong-un quoted Kim Jong-un as saying: “In the national emergency fight against the epidemic in preparation for the global health crisis, the party’s important decisions were ignored, causing serious incidents and posing a huge crisis to the security of the country and the people.

“A major factor hindering the execution of important tasks is the incompetence and irresponsibility of senior officials,” he added.

“It is necessary to carry out a whole-party struggle against the ideological defects of high-ranking officials and various negative factors.”

North Korea has not officially confirmed any coronavirus cases, and South Korean and US officials questioned this claim.

But this isolated country has adopted strict anti-virus measures, Including border closures and domestic travel restrictions.

The KCNA stated that Kim Jong Un convened a Politburo meeting of the Workers’ Party of Korea to resolve the negligence of some party executives, including the failure to implement important long-term measures to fight the pandemic.

The Politburo meeting was held 11 days after the country’s third time this year, the four-day highly publicized Labour Party Plenary.

Leif-Eric Easley, a professor at Ewha University in Seoul, said that Kim Jong-un’s remarks may be seen as signs of deteriorating health, and the government is doing the necessary politics to accept coronavirus vaccines from abroad. ready.

He said in an email: “So far, the Kim regime has doubled its international isolation during the pandemic.” “Unfortunately, there are currently very few diplomats and aid workers in other countries in North Korea. There are not many people. With eyes and ears, it is becoming more and more difficult to assess the situation. Without the hands they trust, it will be even more difficult to provide assistance to those most in need.”

Government reorganization

Several Politburo members, the secretaries of the Central Committee and officials of several state agencies were replaced at the meeting, although the KCNA did not specify whether the reorganization was related to negligence in duties related to the pandemic.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, North Korean state media has been emphasizing efforts to fight the coronavirus, and officials have also warned people to stay vigilant.

Jin himself thanked his people with tears that there were no cases in the military parade in October.

Nevertheless, Pyongyang’s coronavirus defense has paid a high price.

Its self-imposed and strictly enforced blockade makes it more isolated than ever: trade with Beijing-its economic lifeline-has slowed to a trickle, and all international aid workers have left the country.

This undated photo of North Korean Prime Minister Kim Deok-hoon at the tidelands of Longme Island was released in April [File: KCNA via Reuters]

This month, Pyongyang admitted that it was resolving the food crisis, which sounded a wake-up call in a country whose agricultural sector has been unable to feed itself for a long time.

Earlier, King warned his people to prepare for the “worst case ever.”

Pyongyang has been seeking to increase its loyalty to the authorities. Last week, national television broadcasted a capital resident expressing concern and saying that everyone is Kim’s “wasting” condition, who has lost significant weight in recent weeks, is “heartbreaking”.

Analysts said that Pyongyang portrayed Kim Jong Un as a “dedicated and diligent” leader to beautify him. As the country struggles to cope with the food crisis and other challenges.

In recent months, Kim Jong Un has sent a series of lengthy letters to political organizations such as the Communist Youth League and the Federation of Trade Unions, urging them to pursue “loyalty and patriotism.”

At the same time, according to the Korean Central News Agency, the authorities launched a campaign against “criminal” youths tainted by foreign influence, who are “dangerous poisons” for national ideology.

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