Kim Jong-Un Given Unapproved Coronavirus Vaccine From China
Kim Jong-Un has been given an unapproved coronavirus vaccine developed in China, intelligence sources have claimed.
US analysts said Japanese sources confirmed the North Korean leader and his family were vaccinated by an experimental treatment within the past two or three weeks, while several high-ranking officials in the country may also have received the vaccine.
It’s not known which Chinese company produced the vaccine, but US observers have previously said at least three are currently in development.
Unlike several American and European researchers, China has not yet revealed the results of global phase 3 trials of any treatments, however one company, Sinopharm, has already reportedly provided vaccines for more than one million people in China with no reported issues. A spokesperson for the Chinese foreign ministry said they had no knowledge of the reports.
North Korea is one of just 10 countries in the world that has yet to report a single case, however many observers are skeptical of the claim. South Korea’s National Intelligence Service says that due to the close trading relationship between North Korea and China – the isolated country’s main ally – an outbreak cannot be ruled out. The two countries’ shared border has been closed since late January, with Kim also having ordered a three-week lockdown in the Kaesong border region.
Choi Jung-hun, an infectious diseases expert who defected from North Korea in 2012, said he had doubts that the North Korean leader would risk taking a new vaccine.
He told Reuters:
Even if a Chinese vaccine had already been approved, no drug is perfect and he would not take that risk when he has numerous shelters which can ensure almost complete isolation.
The news comes after Microsoft warned last month that North Korean hackers were trying to break into the systems of a number of companies working on vaccine research. South Korea also reported last week that it had prevented an attempt to disrupt vaccine development in the country.
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