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North Korea has shut down its capital city due to a’respiratory ailment’

North Korea has reportedly locked down the capital city of Pyongyang due to an outbreak of a “respiratory illness.”

The lockdown was reportedly imposed on the city’s 5.1 million residents on Friday. Reports indicate that people in the city are being strongly advised to stay inside their homes, and cars and buses are being stopped and searched at checkpoints.

It is unclear what the exact illness is, but reports suggest it is a respiratory virus similar to the common cold or the flu. North Korea has not reported any cases of the novel coronavirus, although its neighbors South Korea and China have reported several cases.

North Korean health officials have yet to comment on the situation, but it is believed that the government is taking precautionary measures to prevent the spread of any illness. It is also possible that the government is using the lockdown to help contain any potential cases of the novel coronavirus.