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Bitterly cold winter affects NKorean crops - weatherman

March 30, 2012, 12:02 UTC+3
According to the weatherman, “real danger of a drought has emerged” because of insufficient precipitation”
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PYONGYANG, March 30 (Itar-Tass) — Unusually cold temperatures last winter in the north of the Korean peninsula, particularly in February, “adversely affected the local agricultural sector,” a representative of North Korea’s meteorological service has told reporters.

According to the weatherman, “real danger of a drought has emerged” because of insufficient precipitation”.

Staffers of international humanitarian organizations based in Pyongyang believe that an unfavorable food situation persists in North Korea. Besides, the United States has announced that it suspends a program of food aid to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in connection with its intentions to launch a man-made satellite.

Under agreements reached between the two countries in February, Washington has agreed to supply North Korea with 240,000 of food aid worth about 200 million dollars in exchange for Pyongyang’s moratorium on missile and nuclear tests and uranium enrichment at its nuclear center in Yongbyon.

However, shortly after that North Korea made statements about its intentions to launch an earth observation satellite to mark the 100th birthday of its late leader Kim Il-sung, which triggered a sharply negative reaction. Washington dubbed Pyongyang’s actions as highly provocative, reminding it that U.N. Security Council resolutions clearly prohibit North Korea to make such launches.

In response, the North Korean Foreign Ministry said the launch will be made “solely for peaceful purposes, which is not at variance with the agreements between the two states”.

Meanwhile, North Korea’s Prime Minister Choe Yong Rim has recently visited one of the vanguard agricultural cooperatives in Hwanghae Province in the south of the country.

According to the Korean Central News Agency, he marked a necessity to increase crop yield with the use of “modern technological and scientific methods”.

“Underscoring the need to glorify the honor of being a model farm in the era of Songun through increased production of rice this year, the centenary of the birth of President Kim Il Sung, the premier urged those units related to the farm to sincerely help it,” the news agency said.

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