Russian Ambassador Says No Famine in North Korea, Trade May Resume Soon



Josh Smith | US News & World Report

SEOUL (Reuters) – Life is difficult in North Korea but there is no famine and some cross-border shipments may resume soon, Russia’s ambassador in Pyongyang said, a week after North Korean leader Kim Jong Un declared the country was facing a “worst-ever situation.”


Kim last week urged ruling party officials to wage another “Arduous March” of work and sacrifice, linking the current economic crises to a period in the 1990s of famine and disaster.

Russia’s ambassador, one of the few foreign envoys in the country, said that while it was unclear exactly what Kim meant the current situation could not be compared to that period.

“Thank god, it is a long shot from the Arduous March, and I hope it would never come to that,” Ambassador Alexander Matsegora told Russia’s TASS news agency according to a transcript published on Wednesday.

“The most important thing is that there is no famine in the country today.”

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