North Korean floods: Homeless survivors as winter approaches

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One month after devastating floods ravaged North Korea’s northeast, aid agencies have warned that many survivors are homeless and at risk of disease as winter looms.

“In two to three weeks it will be a different story,” Patrick Elliott, a delegate with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), said in a statement warning that incoming snowfall in October could be disastrous for unprepared flood survivors. “People have lost their coal supplies and are burning bits of wood in makeshift stoves to keep warm. They need proper roofs over their heads, fuel and warm clothes. The risk of a secondary disaster is very real.”

Elliott said that increasing numbers of old people and young people had been diagnosed with respiratory infections and diarrhea.

The floods, considered the worst in decades, killed hundreds, left 70,000 people homeless, and a total of 140,000 people in desperate need of assistance in the north of Hamgyong province.

Flood survivors are currently staying in public buildings and with host families. While the IFRC is purchasing thousands of roofing sheets for permanent homes, the North Korean government has started to reconstruct permanent homes.


This entry was posted in by Grant Montgomery.

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