CORONAVIRUS EXECUTION?: North Korea reportedly shoots official dead after he breaks quarantine

This picture taken on Dec. 29, 2019 and released by North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) on Dec. 30 shows North Korean leader Kim Jong Un attending the 5th Plenary Meeting of the 7th Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea in Pyongyang. KCNA via KNS / AFP via Getty Images

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A North Korean official who was caught breaking the country’s coronavirus quarantine reportedly paid the ultimate price.

“A trade official who was quarantined after traveling to China secretly visited a public bath earlier this month, was caught, arrested, and immediately shot,” reports South Korea’s Dong-a Ilbo newspaper, citing multiple sources.

Since the coronavirus outbreak late last year, North Korea leader Kim Jong Un has severely restricted crossings at the northern border with China last month and instituted military law to keep people in isolation during the quarantine period and to not visit public spaces for precautionary reasons.

The paper also reported a senior National Security Agency official, who did not disclose his recent visit to China, was demoted to a farm.

According to the state-owned Korean Central News Agency, the isolation period in the country was set at 30 days to curb the spread of the virus.

“All the institutions and fields of the state and foreigners staying in the DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) should obey it unconditionally,”

Meanwhile, North Korea received some support from an unlikely ally.

The United States released a statement Thursday offering to help U.S. and international organizations in North Korea contain the spread of the virus.

“We strongly support and encourage the work of U.S. and international aid and health organizations to counter and contain the spread of coronavirus in the DPRK,” spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement.

“The United States is ready and prepared to expeditiously facilitate the approval of assistance from these organizations.”

The statement comes on the heels of the Red Cross calling for an urgent exemption to sanctions against North Korea to help prevent an outbreak.