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‘Poisoned candy’: North Korean state media urges rejection of foreign aid despite food shortages

North Korea’s official newspaper said that the country should refuse foreign aid, comparing it to “poisoned candies” – despite increasing hardships and reports of food shortages.

Rodong Sinmun, the ruling Workers’ Party paper, cautioned against economic aid from “imperialists”, who use aid as “a trap to plunder and submitge”.

The paper stated that it was a mistake to suggest that the economy can be boosted by accepting and eating poisoned candy.

This comes after warnings about a severe food shortage in the country, which has been suffering from flooding and typhoons in recent years. There have also been international sanctions to curb its missile and nuclear programs.


Due to COVID-19, the country has seen its trade with China, one of its major food sources, drop sharply.

Most UN agencies and Western relief organizations have left North Korea.

South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported Wednesday that approximately 700 North Korean prisoners had died of famine and other diseases in three North Korea prisons, including the capital city of Kaechon.

Image Despite warnings of food shortages the country continues to project its military strength.

Seoul’s Unification Ministry handles inter-Korean affairs and declined to comment.

It warned, however, that there could be an increase in starvation deaths in North Korean provinces on Tuesday.

A ministry official stated to reporters that food production fell from last year and that there are distribution problems due to changes in their food supply policy and distribution policy.

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South Korea’s rural development agency in December estimated that the North’s crop yield was around 4.5million tonnes, which is 3.8% less than 2021.

Heavy summer rains and other weather conditions were cited by the agency as a reason.

Kwon Young-se, Unification Minister, stated that Pyongyang had requested support from the UN’s World Food Programme (UN food agency), but there was no progress due to differences in monitoring.

According to state media reports, the top officials of North Korea are scheduled to meet in February to discuss a “fundamental shift” to their agricultural policy.

Despite concerns over food security, Pyongyang continues to show military power in recent weeks, months, and missile tests.

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North Korea launches ballistic missile

It launched two ballistic missiles from its east coast on Monday. Kim Jong Un’s sister warned that the Pacific could be used as a firing range.

This incident occurred just two days after North Korea launched an intercontinental missile in the sea off Japan’s coast. It was described by state media as a move to increase its “fatal nuclear attack capability.”

Japan’s defense ministry stated that the missile launches “threaten peace and security in Japan, the region and the international community”.


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