BBC Report Uncovers Severe Starvation in N.Korea

  • By Kim Myong-song

    June 16, 2023 11:34

    North Koreans are suffering from severe food shortages and starvation since the border with China was sealed in the coronavirus pandemic, a BBC investigation reveals.
    With the help of Daily NK, the BBC secretly interviewed three ordinary North Koreans in Pyongyang and in border towns over the course of several months. They spoke of their fear that they might starve to death or be executed while attempting to escape since the North Korea-China border was sealed in the coronavirus pandemic.
    Ji Yeon, a resident in Pyongyang, said, "I know one family that starved to death at home."
    "One day she knocked on her neighbor's door to give them water, but there was no answer. When the authorities went inside three days later, they discovered the whole family had starved to death," the BBC said.
    Chan Ho, a construction worker in a border town, testified that five people in his town starved to death. "When they closed the border, everything became scarce," he recalled.
    Myong Suk, who sells medicine smuggled from China, said that the markets are now empty, though in the past, three quarters of products sold in the markets were from China. "Our food situation has never been this bad," she said.
    "Before the border closure, Myong Suk would arrange for much-needed drugs, including antibiotics, to be smuggled across from China, which she would sell at her local market," the BBC said.
    She feared she too might die of starvation in her sleep. Hungry neighbors knock at the door asking for food, but she has to turn them away.
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