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UN warns of food shortages in North Korea

North Korean agricultural workers grow rice in South Pyongan Province.  Photo gallery.

North Korean agricultural workers grow rice in South Pyongan Province. Photo gallery.

picture: AP/TT

Severe food shortages threaten closed North Korea, warns the UN Food Program (FAO). As early as next month, a shortage of about 860,000 tons of food can be felt.

North Korea is expected to produce about 5.6 million tons of grain this year – which is 1.1 million tons too little if the population is to be born, according to estimates by the Food and Agriculture Organization. Of course, 205,000 tons will be imported, but the total is still very low.

Dictatorship has always struggled to produce enough food. Last year’s pandemic, which closed the border with China, Pyongyang’s economic lifeline, along with storms and floods exacerbated the situation. Last month, dictator Kim Jong Un admitted that the food situation was difficult and asked his countrymen to prepare for the worst possible situation.

North Korea is very poor and has been subject to several rounds of sanctions from the outside world, as it is suspected of trying to develop nuclear weapons.

In the 1990s, after the fall of the Soviet Union, the country was ravaged by a severe famine that killed hundreds of thousands of people.

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