In an uncharacteristic step by the North Korean government, officials have made a public apology after a building collapse in Pyongyang reportedly led to the death of hundreds of people.
Officials including the country’s Minister of People’s Security offered “profound consolation and apology” to the family members of those that died in the 24-storey building collapse on Tuesday.
The Minister of People’s Security, Choe Pu-il, said that his poor supervision had led to the “unimaginable accident” and that he had “repented” after the accident. He added that “he failed to find out factors that can put at risk the lives and properties of the people and to take thorough-going measures.”
Reports also say that the leader of the secretive Communist state, Kim Jong-un, had been deeply affected by the accident and that he had “sat up all night, feeling painful” when he had heard about the accident.
North Korean authorities rarely give coverage to incidents that might lead to negative public perceptions, however in this case, not only did KCNA, North Korea’s state news channel, show images of the collapse, they also showed footage of the rescue effort and statements of apology from government officials.