11 July 2024

 – Russia will promptly consider any request from North Korea for COVID-19 vaccine supplies, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said on Friday.

North Korean comrades are well aware of our various inoculations, they are aware of our extensive experience with COVID,” Peskov said. “If there are appeals from Pyongyang, they will be dealt with promptly.”

At least one person confirmed to have COVID-19 has died in North Korea and hundreds of thousands have shown fever symptoms, state media said on Friday, offering hints at the potentially dire scale of the country’s first confirmed outbreak of the pandemic.

While the Biden administration has no plans now to share COVID-19 vaccines with North Korea, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Thursday.

North Korea reported its first COVID-19 outbreak on Thursday, calling it the “gravest national emergency” and ordering a national lockdown, with state media saying an Omicron variant had been detected in the capital, Pyongyang.