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China Denies Covid Vaccines to Defectors from North Korea

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China Denies Covid Vaccines to Defectors from North Korea

(CTN News) – According to the US-based Radio Network Voice of America, China has been refusing Covid-19 immunizations to North Korean defectors, which puts their lives in danger (VOA).

Even after removing the Covid-19 limitations, China has refused to treat North Korean refugees.

Even if they have severe Covid-19 symptoms, the migrants cannot get treatment since they have no identifying documentation.

The Daily NK, a website in Seoul, cited a source who said that even if North Korean defectors in China are sick [with the virus], they cannot obtain treatment.

They are not eligible for immunization if they do not have an identification card.


Since the Covid-19 outbreak started, North Korean defectors in China haven’t gotten a single immunization dose.

According to NK News, North Korean defectors in China have not gotten even a single immunization dose since the Covid-19 outbreak began, leaving them defenseless.

In a telephone interview with Daily NK, one defector said that because they cannot get tested for the Covid-19 virus, they must instead take cold medications.

The defector remarked, “We can’t even think about getting vaccinated because we have no IDs. We can’t even travel anyplace without a vaccination certificate.

According to VOA, the Chinese authorities detained the defectors as they attempted to flee to South Korea.

According to the NK news source, many defectors in China are expressing desperation, lamenting their lack of formal recognition by the Chinese government and saying it would be “better to die than live like this.”

Even some defectors who had Covid-19 effects have passed away. Their predicament frustrates other defectors who have seen individuals die in vain.


China, a key friend of North Korea, views the country’s defectors as economic migrants rather than refugees.

China deports defectors in masse under its border deal with North Korea.

Defectors risk being subjected to torture, sexual assault, hard labor, incarceration in re-education or political camps, and even death by the North Korean government if they return home.

In quest of a better life away from a government that strictly regulates every area of their lives, most North Koreans have been fleeing from the northern border and crossing through China before arriving in South Korea.

China does not protect defectors. Instead, these defectors are compelled to remain hidden to avoid being forcefully returned to North Korea by Chinese authorities, according to a report by VOA.

Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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