North Korea Rejects Nearly 3 Million Sinovac COVID-19 Shots

North Korea rejected almost three million COVID-19 jabs from China’s Sinovac Biotech and said that the vaccine should be delivered to strongly affected nations, according to Reuters, which cited UNICEF on Wednesday, September 1.

The report said North Korea denied the shipment due to the limited global supply for vaccines and continuous virus surges elsewhere. The country had also rejected AstraZeneca shots due to concerns with its side effects.

So far, North Korea has not recorded any COVID-19 cases and enforced strict health measures such as closing its borders and domestic travel curbs.

The Institute for National Security Strategy said that North Korea was reluctant to take in Chinese vaccines due to doubts about its effectiveness and said that they’re keener on shots made in Russia, but wanted to acquire it for free. 

A spokesperson for the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization alliance said, “We continue to work with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) authorities to help respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.”


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