UN calls for $98 million to respond to urgent humanitarian priorities in DPRK

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The United Nations has updated its plans to address critical humanitarian needs in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) for the remainder of 2013.

A release from the UN Resident Coordinator for the DPRK says the humanitarian programmes being implemented by five UN agencies in the country remain drastically underfunded. It explains that of the overall funding requirement of $150 million for 2013, $98 million is still urgently needed for food and agricultural support, health and nutrition, water and sanitation interventions.

UN Resident Coordinator Ghulam Isaczai says “While the overall humanitarian situation has improved slightly over the last 12 months, the structural causes of people's vulnerability persist", adding that the "external assistance continues to play a vital role in safeguarding the lives of millions whose food security, nutritional status and essential health needs would otherwise be seriously compromised.”

Around 2.4 million very vulnerable people in the most food insecure provinces need regular food assistance.

Mr. Isaczai noted that “Without sustained humanitarian support, the gains made in the past 10 years in improving food security and the overall health and nutrition of the most vulnerable–children, pregnant and nursing mothers, and the elderly – could be quickly reversed.”

Around 16 million people remain chronically food insecure and highly vulnerable to food production gaps.

Donn Bobb, United Nations.

Duration: 1’22″

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