Eas­ing UN sanc­tions af­fect­ing food aid es­sen­tial for solv­ing penin­su­lar is­sue

Global Times - Weekend - - WORLD - By Xie Went­ing Page Ed­i­tor: xiewent­[email protected] glob­al­times.com.cn

The eas­ing of UN sanc­tions on North Ko­rea that in­di­rectly ob­struct food as­sis­tance to the coun­try is a must as it could have a pos­i­tive in­flu­ence on re­solv­ing the Korean Penin­sula is­sue, an ex­pert said on Fri­day.

The re­marks came after a re­port on Thurs­day’s Korean Cen­tral News Agency (KCNA) – the State-run news agency of North Ko­rea – which ad­mit­ted “draw­backs” in its agri­cul­tural sec­tor.

Pak Pong-ju, North Ko­rea’s premier, said at a na­tional meet­ing that “they failed to con­duct seed pro­duc­tion and man­age­ment in a re­spon­si­ble way and also fell short of do­ing proper strain distri­bu­tion in line with cli­matic con­di­tions and char­ac­ter­is­tics of fields and thus could not dis­play to the full the ad­van­tage of the field-re­spon­si­bil­ity sys­tem within the frame­work of the sub-work­team man­age­ment sys­tem” when re­fer­ring to the draw­backs, read the re­port.

“There is a food short­age prob­lem in North Ko­rea. It’s good for North Ko­rea to see the draw­backs [of its agri­cul­tural man­age­ment sys­tem] and then they will make pos­i­tive changes,” Lü Chao, a re­search fel­low at the Liaon­ing Academy of So­cial Sciences, told the Global Times.

“But it’s not an easy thing for North Ko­rea to solve its food short­age given its cur­rent agri­cul­tural con­di­tions. So it’s nec­es­sary for the UN to re­lax its sanc­tions that could af­fect in­ter­na­tional food as­sis­tance to the coun­try,” he said.

He stressed to the Global Times that sanc­tions should not be premised on “cre­at­ing a hu­man­i­tar­ian cri­sis,” and food “holds sig­nif­i­cance to peo­ple’s liveli­hood.”

The 2017 re­port on the State of Food Se­cu­rity and Nutri­tion in the World re­leased by the UN re­vealed that 10.3 mil­lion peo­ple in North Ko­rea were un­der­nour­ished.

“This year, the food short­age in North Ko­rea isn’t that se­ri­ous, so it won’t have an im­pact on the penin­su­lar is­sue. But if the food cri­sis ag­gra­vates, it will de­te­ri­o­rate the process of solv­ing the penin­su­lar is­sue,” Lü warned.

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