Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

David Beasley has run the World Food Programme since 2017


UN World Food Programme warns could suspend work in N. Korea

Seoul, Korea, Republic of, Feb 23 – Strict coronavirus restrictions imposed by North Korea could force the World Food Programme to suspend operations in the country, where chronic malnutrition is rife, a report on the UN organisation’s website said Tuesday.

The impoverished country — which is under international sanctions over its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programmes — has long struggled to feed itself, suffering chronic food shortages.

The World Food Programme (WFP) has by far the largest international aid operation in the country and provides specialised foods to around a million pregnant women, nursing mothers and children every month, according to its website.

Sanctions have long complicated aid efforts but the WFP said the North’s self-imposed coronavirus isolation was posing new problems for relief work.

North Korea closed its borders in January last year — the first country in the world to do so — to protect itself against the virus which first broke out in neighbouring China.

“Food imports, international staff deployments and physical monitoring access remain curtailed for a prolonged period,” the WFP said in a report outlining its plans.

“WFP will opportunistically use windows in which food imports are allowed to replenish and optimise in-country stocks,” it added.

“There is a significant residual risk that, should food imports not be possible, operations will cease in 2021.”

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Pyongyang has long insisted it has not seen any cases of Covid-19 — which has killed more than two million people worldwide — with its leader Kim Jong Un reiterating the claim at a huge military parade in October.

Experts suggest that is unlikely, given the virus first emerged in neighbouring China, its main provider of trade and aid.

More than 40 percent of North Korea’s 25 million people are considered food insecure, according to UN estimates.


More on Capital News


Kyiv (Ukraine) (AFP), Jun 25 – Russian strikes hit a residential building in Kyiv on Sunday in the first attack on the capital in...


Washington (AFP), Jun 24 – Elected leaders across the US political divide rallied Sunday for a long fight ahead on abortion — state by...


Elmau Castle (Germany) (AFP), Jun 26 – World powers on Sunday agreed to ban gold exports from Russia, kicking off a G7 meeting aimed...

County News

Tension is high in the affected as residents fear attacks by the gang that has been killing in a cultic manner.


Oslo, Norway, Jun 26 – Norway paid tribute on Sunday to the victims of a deadly shooting near a gay bar in the capital...


The interviews had been delayed after the High Court barred the Commission chaired by Chief Justice Martha Koome from conducting them following a suit...


Dubai (AFP), Jun 26 – Like millions of other migrant labourers in the Gulf, one of the world’s hottest and driest regions, construction worker...


Riyadh (AFP), Jun 26 – Iraq’s prime minister met with Saudi Arabia’s de facto ruler, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, in the kingdom Sunday...