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North Korean leader Kim Jong-un heavily criticized his own government yesterday, slamming officials as a COVID-19 outbreak accelerated across the country. At least 62 people have reportedly died and 700,000 more are in quarantine since the virus began spreading through the country of 26 million in late April.
The outbreak forced North Korea to admit the presence of the coronavirus inside its borders for the first time since the pandemic began more than two years ago. Western officials believe the country has a near-zero vaccination rate, with Pyongyang having turned down offers of COVID-19 vaccines made by the global COVAX consortium. Kim, who has faced ongoing questions about his overall health, has taken to wearing a mask in public.
The outbreak comes as President Joe Biden is set to visit South Korea tomorrow as part of his first trip to Asia during his presidency.