SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea says six people have died and 350,000 have been treated for a fever that has spread explosively across the country.
The announcement Friday came a day after it acknowledged its first COVID-19 cases of the pandemic.
North Korea likely doesn't have enough testing supplies and said the cause of the fevers was unclear.
Experts have warned a COVID-19 outbreak could be devastating in a country with a broken health care system and an unvaccinated, malnourished population.
Leader Kim Jong Un was shown on state TV at a pandemic response meeting, where he took off his face mask and smoked a cigarette while talking with officials.
North Korea has previously refused vaccines from the international community.