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North Korean leader’s ‘excessive anger’ and ‘irrational measures’ to combat virus

South Korea’s spy agency has told politicians there about what it has gleaned its neighbour to the north has been up to during the pandemic. 

Politicians revealed the details from a briefing by the National Intelligence Service (NIS) on Friday.

They said they were told North Korea’s Kim Jong-un has ordered at least two people be executed, banned fishing at sea and locked down the capital of Pyongyang to guard against COVID-19.

One of the politicians, Ha Tae-keung, quoted the NIS as saying Mr Kim is displaying “excessive anger” and taking “irrational measures” over the pandemic and its economic impact.

Mr Ha said he was told that North Korea executed a high-profile money changer in Pyongyang last month after holding the person responsible for a falling exchange rate and another official was killed in August for violating government regulations restricting goods brought from abroad.

North Korea has also banned fishing and salt production at sea to prevent seawater from being infected with the virus, the NIS told politicians.

And it has also made an unsuccessful hacking attempt on a South Korean pharmaceutical company that was trying to develop a coronavirus vaccine, the NIS said.

North Korea has maintained that it has not found a single coronavirus case on its soil, a claim disputed by outside experts.

Pictured: Kim making a television address on 10 October 2020

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