Floods kill 60, displace 44,000 in North Korea

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Flooding following heavy rain has killed 60 people and left over 44,000 homeless in North Korea, the United Nations said Tuesday, after the country reported that a northeastern river suffered its worst-ever flood.

Pyongyang said Friday the Tumen river, which partially marks the border with China and Russia, experienced the biggest flood ever recorded due to a rainstorm that began four days earlier.

Nearby areas including Musan and Hoeryong were hard hit, with 60 dead and five percent of the population homeless, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said in a statement. Nearly 9,000 buildings were destroyed or damaged with 10,000 hectares (24,711 acres) of farmland flooded, it said, adding joint relief efforts involving the UN and the North were underway.

The impoverished nation is vulnerable to natural disasters, especially floods. Its territory is largely composed of mountains and hills that have long been deforested for fuel or turned into terraced rice fields. This allows rainwater to flow downhill unchecked.


This entry was posted in by Grant Montgomery.

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