October 19, 2021

The Queens County Citizen

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Floods and evacuation in North Korea, Kim Jong Un sends equipment

Floods and evacuation in North Korea, Kim Jong Un sends equipment

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Sunday ordered the sending of aid supplies to countries affected by the floods, from which nearly 5,000 people had to be evacuated.

Pictures aired Saturday by state broadcaster KCTV show heavy rains causing flooding to the roof level of houses as well as damaged bridges.

“Hundreds of hectares of farmland” were submerged in southern Hmong Yang in the southern province and affected roads and houses after the ditches broke.

Bad weather came after Kim Jong Un admitted in June that his country was facing a “tense food situation”.

According to the state-run KCNA news agency, he ordered supplies and financial assistance to be sent on Sunday to help South Hamgyang Province return to normalcy.

Authorities in the province on Thursday discussed “urgent measures to quickly stabilize the lives of people in the most affected areas.”

As the soil has already dried up, further precipitation will cause more damage, North Korea Deputy Head of Meteorological Services Ri Yong Nam told KCTV. “We expect heavy rains in many areas, mainly near the east coast, until August 10,” he said.

According to the United Nations Food Program (FAO) released in July, North Korea could face a food shortage of 860,000 tonnes this year. The agency warned of a “difficult lean period between August and October”.

The North Korean regime, under international sanctions for banned military operations, has long struggled to feed its people and regularly suffers from food shortages.

Pressure on the North Korean economy to combat the coronavirus epidemic and border closures with a series of hurricanes and floods in 2020 has increased.

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North Korea experienced a severe famine in the 1990s when aid was cut off from Moscow after the collapse of the Soviet Union.