Thursday, March 22, 2007

Starvation hangs over North Korea

If relief doesn't come soon, millions of North Koreans are at risk of serious malnutrition, said Jean-Pierre de Margerie, director of the U.N. World Food Program office in Pyongyang, North Korea's capital.

The government stopped distributing food last summer and citizens now primarily rely on aid.

Comparing 7-year-old boys in North and South Korea, the boy in the north is 8 inches shorter, weighs 20 pounds less and on average will live 10 fewer years, de Margerie said, adding that 6 million North Koreans —- one quarter of the population —- is "chronically undernourished."

[Excerpt of an article by Craig Simons, Atlanta Journal Constitution]

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