Why Is North Korea Opposed to COVID-19 Vaccine?
North Korea has claimed to be immune to the coronavirus pandemic’s impacts from its inception, much to the incredulity of the rest of the globe. Simultaneously, the North Korean dictatorship has implemented a series of harsh measures to ward off the virus, ranging from border restrictions to delaying the start of the school year.
North Korea, according to a new report, has refused to cooperate with any international vaccination distribution scheme.
Why Doesn’t North Korea Want COVID-19 Vaccine?
North Korea, the Voice of America said over the weekend, “has made little progress toward receiving vaccines from COVAX.” COVAX is a United Nations-led multinational project to supply coronavirus vaccinations to developing countries.
In March, North Korea was scheduled to receive 1.7 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, COVAX. However, the VOA story indicates that negotiations between North Korea and Gavi, the alliance that oversees the COVAX program, have “stalled,” with the North Korean dictatorship taking only two of the seven essential administrative procedures.
The dictatorship has expressed reservations about the vaccine’s safety and has refused to allow overseas employees into the country to assist with distribution. Additionally, North Korea lacks the essential refrigeration. Gavi will not provide vaccines in a country where it is not physically present.
“Had the DPRK been more diligent with their paperwork, they would have been able to obtain some vaccines. It is difficult to determine how much, but if they followed Gavi’s suggestion, we would be well along by now,” a “person acquainted with the talks” told VOA.
Gavi stated in a statement that North Korea had not yet received the immunizations.
“Progress is being made and discussions with the DPRK continue,” a Gavi official told VOA. “As we approach a potential delivery date, we will be able to share more information about delivery schedules.”
The vaccine tale corresponds to a mysterious “grave incident” that the Kim administration recently admitted. According to the BBC, Kim Jong-un recently blamed subordinates for “causing a grave incident that put the lives of people and the nation’s security at risk.”
“Kim Jong-remark un’s may indicate a possible breach of the coronavirus quarantine system or the discovery of a new smuggling trade route between North Korea and China,” a BBC expert speculated on the situation.
“The fact that the expanded Politburo meeting was held 11 days after the plenary session demonstrates the seriousness of the Covid situation.”
Recent reports of the North Korean leader losing a large amount of weight have fueled suspicion about his health, even though there has been no official explanation for the leader’s thinner appearance in recent months.