[Photos] North Hamgyong Province still recovering from flood damage

[As Heard in North Korea]
Kim Ga Young  |  2017-06-27 18:01
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"As Heard in North Korea" articles contain radio programming content broadcast by Unification Media Group [UMG], an independent multimedia consortium targeting North Korean citizens.

Residents in North Hamgyong Province remain unable to farm as their paddy fields have yet to fully recover from last years flood damage. Although the North Korean authorities have announced that restoration is now complete, there are evidently still many rice and paddy fields left in ruin. 

Daily NK recently obtained images of rice and paddy fields located in Onsong County, North Hamgyong Province. The images show farmlands (which were arable until only a year ago) left in ruins.

During the floods last year, large tracts of paddy fields were destroyed as significant volumes of sand and gravel were dumped on them. The residents have not been able to farm most of the land, as restoration efforts have been inadequate.

"One third of the paddy fields in the Tumen River region are still damaged. The farmers may starve this year because they cant even plant seeds," a source in North Hamgyong Province told Daily NK.

Residents could normally have grown food on their small private plots in the mountains, but even these areas are in a poor state due to the chronic lack of fertilizer.

Instead of addressing the situation, the North Korean authorities have instead been threatening the residents, stating their intentions to reclaim all private plots in order to reforest the area.

"Residents are worried that food shortages will not be resolved soon, and they have suffered through the period of spring poverty. People who were hit by the great floods are now vulnerable" said an additional source in North Hamgyong Province.

Regardless of the situation, the regime has not made efforts to address the mounting issues. At the time of the floods, it was primarily focused on pushing ahead with a fifth nuclear test which was conducted at great cost.

Additionally, the regime first chose to restore historic sites idolizing the Kim family, rather than the homes of the residents. A series of public housing projects undertaken thereafter have been widely rejected by residents for safety reasons.

*Translated by Yejie Kim
*Edited by Lee Farrand

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