The Institute for Far Eastern Studies (IFES) in Seoul summarized the North Korean government’s explanation about current food shortages in their series of NK Briefs (No. 11-03-09) as follows:
The Rodong Sinmun, the official mouthpiece of the Korean Workers’ Party (of North Korea), recently reported on skyrocketing food prices around the world, describing the phenomenon as a global crisis. The newspaper encouraged North Koreans to do their part to deal with the current food crisis by being self-reliant and by practicing conservation.
By highlighting the fact that the food crisis is worldwide, the newspaper simply reported the current food shortage situation in North Korea as part of the global phenomenon.
In the government-run propaganda website “Uriminzokkiri,” an article titled, “World Food Crisis and Its Solution” was published on March 7, 2011. The article claimed, “Millions of people around the world are starving from soaring food prices and decline in world grain production and supply.” It also added, “Huge losses are expected this year with unusual extreme weather conditions and natural disasters affecting the major grain producing countries.”
Rodong Sinmun claimed, “Exacerbating global food crisis situation is threatening the lives of millions of people around the world.” It further asserted, “The current food crisis is a dire challenge to humanity today.”
In addition, strong criticisms were raised against the West, “for aggravating the food crisis by allocating massive amount of crops for biofuel production, in which developing countries are taking the worst hit.” Furthermore, the newspaper reproached Western nations as imperialists, “Taking advantage of the food crisis to interfere in the internal affairs of those countries worst affected and to further strengthen their domination schemes over these countries.”
As a solution, the Rodong Sinmun stated, “It is important to exhibit self-reliance to improve agriculture and grain production, without looking to others. It is most critical to increase food production and conserve food supply at the same time.”
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