Wednesday, August 20, 2008

S. Koreans continue aid to North Korea

South Korean private groups have stepped up aid to impoverished North Korea this year despite frosty ties between the two governments.

'Purely civilian aid to North Korea has been on a steady increase irrespective of current inter-Korean relations', said Mr Kim Ho Nyoun, spokesman for the unification ministry, which handles cross-border ties.

The aid from local non-governmental groups included 4,000 tonnes of grain for the communist North, which is again facing acute food shortages.

The Seoul government's customary food aid to the North has been suspended amid a breakdown in relations since conservative president Lee Myung Bak took office in late February and promised a firmer line with Pyongyang.


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