|North Korean leader Kim Jong-un speaks during an executive policy council meeting of the Worker's Party on Aug. 5, 2020. (Photo by=Rodong Sinmun)|
[아시아뉴스통신=레악카나 기자] North Korean leader Kim Jong-un convened an executive policy council meeting of the Worker's Party and ordered special aid to the city of Kaesong under lockdown over coronavirus concerns, state media reported Thursday.
In late July, North Korea declared a "maximum emergency system" against the coronavirus after it claimed a defector returned home from the South with symptoms. It has since intensified antivirus efforts, putting the border town of Kaesong under complete lockdown since July 24 and tightening its national borders. KCNA said that over 550,000 relief items of more than 30 kinds have been urgently sent to Kaesong since the start of the maximum emergency system. Officials at the meeting also decided to launch "a new department within the Central Committee of the Party and studied and discussed the ways to radically improve the personnel affairs system of the Party," KCNA added without elaborating.
This marks the first time North Korea has disclosed the results of the party's executive policy council meeting since it began in 2016. Experts say the North's move to disclose the results of the meeting may reflect its desire to leave room for inter-Korean cooperation. As the two-week quarantine period will end this week in Kaesong, officials could have discussed whether to continue the lockdown, he added.