Typhoons stoke fears of humanitarian crisis in North Korea

Footage from North Korea's Central News Agency depicts a small boat off Kangwon Province (Aug 30, 2012) Typhoon Bolaven struck the North on Tuesday and Wednesday, submerging houses and roads, ruining thousands of acres of crops and triggering landslides that buried train tracks. A second major storm, Typhoon Tembin, pounded the Korean Peninsula with more rains on Thursday.The storms come as North Korea is still recovering from earlier floods that killed more than 170 people and destroyed thousands of homes. That in turn followed a springtime drought that was the worst in a century in some areas.Foreign aid groups contacted on Thursday said they are standing by in Pyongyang, but had not received new requests for help from the North Korean government. They had little information on the extent of damage and were relying on reports from state media.

The country’s wariness toward the outside world, as well as a primitive rural road system, means aid may be slow arriving, if it is allowed to come at all.Typhoon Bolaven swept through parts of northeast China from Tuesday evening to Wednesday, flooding cities and delaying flights.”These fresh storms, coming just a few weeks after the serious flooding they do raise concerns because we see parts of the countryside battered again that have already been left in a vulnerable state,” said Francis Markus, spokesman for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies in East Asia.Tembin’s strong winds and hard rain were pounding South Korea on Thursday, as residents of some cities waded through streets flooded with murky, knee-deep water. The national weather agency in Seoul said the storm would move off the peninsula’s east coast and that some cities in North Korea would see severe weather conditions.
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s