Kim Jong-un warns North Koreans Covid can be caught through falling snow

North Koreans have been urged to be extra careful this winter after they were warned that coronavirus can be caught through "falling snow".

The warning comes as North Korea called for measures against the virus to be strengthened for the winter season on Thursday.

The Rodong Sinmun, an organ of the North's Workers' Party, urged citizens to remain vigilant against the pandemic and referenced the peculiar way the virus could reach residents.

"In the winter season, it is important to be aware as ever to make thorough anti-virus measures," it said.

The newspaper described the virus control as an "important political" project to decide whether development would be made in the first year of the North's five-year economic plan.

At the country's eighth party congress in January, Kim Jong-un revealed a new scheme that centred on self-reliance amid strict border controls against the virus and sanctions on its economy.

Jieun Baek, a fellow with the Korea Project, said at the time: “They've really reinforced border security with more border guards.

"They've created buffer zones between one and two metres wide at the border.”

North Korea has previously been accused of paranoia surrounding Covid-19, warning that smokers are at higher risk of contracting the disease and even birds could spread the virus.

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“North Korean media have also been pushing out fringe theories and unverified claims on how the virus is spread,” BBC Monitoring expert Pratik Jakhar told local media at the time.

“It has warned that smokers are at a higher risk of contracting Covid-19, and that migratory birds or even snowfall could spread the virus”.

It seems that after all this time – North Korea still believes that coronavirus can be passed on this way.

The regime claims to be coronavirus-free and has reported no cases to the World Health Organisation so far.

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