Kim Il-sung Square in Pyongyang, North Korea. (123rf)
The US is concerned about the well-being of the North Korean people, but will not provide direct humanitarian assistance, the US State Department said Wednesday.
“The US government has no plans at this time to provide direct humanitarian assistance to the DPRK,” the State Department told Voice of America, using the North’s official name, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, in response to a UN report asking for international support to aid North Koreans.
The North needs $107 million in aid this year, as nearly half its population is in dire conditions, according to the UN’s resident coordinator for Pyongyang.
The plight of North Koreans stems from the regime’s pursuit of unlawful weapons programs at the expense of its people, the State Department said, reiterating its earlier response to relief groups in June, when they said the US-led sanctions on the North had frustrated their humanitarian efforts.
By Choi Si-young (email@example.com