More than 6 million people need food aid in North Korea: U.N.

Reuters News
Posted: Mar 25, 2011 8:48 AM

ROME (Reuters) - More than 6 million people in North Korea urgently need food aid due to a substantial cut in agricultural output, commercial imports and reduced bilateral assistance, the United Nations said on Friday.

In a report released after a joint mission to the reclusive communist state, where a famine in the 1990s killed an estimated 1 million people, three U.N. agencies said the country's public distribution system would run out of food at the beginning of the lean season that runs between May and July.

The agencies, which visited North Korea for a month between February and March, said the country had suffered a series of shocks in recent months, leaving it "highly vulnerable to a food crisis" and threatening a quarter of its 24 million people.

(Reporting by Silvia Aloisi; editing by Keiron Henderson)