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NK is to blame for humanitarian crisis: US

Children in North Korea (AP-Yonhap)
Children in North Korea (AP-Yonhap)
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 plight of North Koreans is owing to the regime’s “choice to prioritize its unlawful WMD (weapons of mass destruction) and ballistic missile programs over the welfare of its own people,” Voice of America quoted the department as saying.

The department was referring to a report in which the UN’s resident coordinator for Pyongyang said the country needs $107 million in aid this year, as nearly half its population is in dire circumstances. The coordinator asked for continued support from the international community to make that happen.

“The US government has no plans at this time to provide direct humanitarian assistance to the DPRK,” the State Department was quoted as saying in Voice of America.

Last June, the State Department maintained a similar stance when relief organizations said the US-led sanctions on North Korea had frustrated their humanitarian efforts.
 
By Choi Si-young (siyoungchoi@heraldcorp.com)
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