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'Religious leaders pour rice into a rice bin representing the Korean peninsula, June 17.'
Coalition calls for rice aid to N.Korea instead of animal feed program
: The rice surplus has led to plumetting rice prices
By Kim Hyeon-dae and Hwang Choon-hwa
Posted on : Jul.15,2010
'The five opposition parties, including the main opposition Democratic Party (DP), and 35 groups, including the Korean Peasants’ League, held a press conference Wednesday in front of Seoul’s Sejong Center for the Performing Arts where they announced that they were forming a “Citizens’ Campaign for Sending Unification Rice to Realize Peace on the Korean Peninsula.”
“As rice aid to North Korea and private interchanges with North Korea have halted over the two years of the Lee Myung-bak administration, the great achievements in national reconciliation and Korean Peninsula peace made over the past decade have come crashing down in an instant,” said the group in a statement for the press conference. “Rice that was once provided to North Korea on the order of 400 thousand tons per year has simply piled up over the past two years, sending rice prices crashing and causing suffering for farmers.”
“Since 2008, food aid to North Korea has been almost completely cut off not only by us but by the United States and the international community,” said Dr. Kim Young-hoon, who compiled the report for KREI. “Since even fertilizer aid has been discontinued, there is nothing whatsoever to lead us to believe that North Korea’s harvest will be any better than last year.”
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N.Korea faces rising food shortage, sources say
: Observers say low crop yields, market restrictions and suspended aid have contributed to the shortage
Posted on : Jul.16, 2010 12:19 KST
'The North Korea source said, “North Korea’s food shortage is worsening due to reduced food yields, restrictions on market distribution quantities, and a drop in aid from South Korea and the rest of the international community.”
North Korea is also known to have recently affected a large-scale increase in its food imports from China in order to address the shortage. Its Chinese food imports between January and May of this year, totaling 110 thousand tons, represented an increase of some 41 percent over the same period last year.'