HomeWorld NewsNorth Korea says 'alien things' on border caused COVID-19

North Korea says ‘alien things’ on border caused COVID-19

Seoul, South Korea — North Korean authorities have ordered its people to avoid “extraterrestrial things” falling near its border with South Korea.

North Korea’s state-run newspaper Rodong Sinmun published a report on the origin of the COVID-19 virus and pointed to materials that arrived from South Korea. The newspaper says two townspeople showed symptoms of COVID-19 after touching “alien things” at the border.

“The State Headquarters for Emergency Epidemic Prevention ensured that an emergency instruction was issued stressing the need to deal vigilantly with extraterrestrial elements from wind and other weather phenomena and balloons in areas along the demarcation line and borders,” Rodong Sinmun said on Friday.

The influx of non-native objects, particularly from the southern half of the Korean peninsula, has placed the North Korean border on the highest level of alert for the longest period since the separation of the two Koreas in 1953. leaflets and propaganda material in the air balloons are common practice on both sides, but Seoul made it illegal in 2020.

“It seems to be an attempt to arouse the suspicions of North Korean citizens about the propaganda leaflets, an attempt to spread the false idea that the leaflets carry COVID-19,” said Hyung Joong Park, chief researcher at the ‘Korea National Unification Institute,’ told ABC News.

Park also explained that they form the narrative that COVID was not caused by Party failures but by a premeditated movement from outside.

PHOTO: A worker in protective gear disinfects a store in Pyongyang, North Korea, June 27, 2022.

A worker in protective gear disinfects a store in Pyongyang, North Korea, June 27, 2022.

Kyodo News via Getty Images

North Korea reported more than 4,750 cases of “fever” on Friday and says that as of Thursday evening since the start of the pandemic, more than 99.827% of people who had “fever” have recovered. There are extremely limited numbers of COVID test kits in North Korea as the regime has refused to accept foreign aid to help identify patients.

South Korea’s Unification Ministry responded to North Korea’s accusation and said it saw no possibility of viruses entering North Korea through leaflets from the South, explaining that the time the North said it came into contact with ‘extraterrestrial materials’ in early April does not match the time of the leafleting, which South Korean activists say was in late April .

“The South Korean Center for Disease Control and the World Health Organization are on the same page that it is impossible to be infected with COVID-19 by the virus remaining on the surface of a object, not to mention that there are no officially confirmed cases of COVID-19 infection through the mail or other means,” Cha Duck Chul, deputy spokesperson for the Ministry of Health, told reporters on Friday. Southern Unification.

On Tuesday, Seoul-based defector group Fighters For North Korea says it flew 20 unauthorized balloons carrying masks, painkillers and doses of vitamin C to send support to pandemic-hit North Korea.

“Accusing South Korea’s balloon and leaflets of spreading the virus lays the groundwork for North Korea to take extreme action against balloon launches on the grounds that it is a threat to national security” , said John Delury, a professor at the Graduate School of International Studies at Yonsei University. ABC News.

ABC News’ Eunseo Nam and Hyerim Lee contributed to this report.

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