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EU team to visit N. Korea next month to assess food crisis

May 29, 2011 - Seoul

A team of European Union officials are reportedly planning to visit North Korea next month to assess the food situation there.

Xinhua quoted Seoul's semi-official Yonhap News Agency as saying that officials from the Humanitarian Aid department of the European Commission would visit Pyongyang following a similar visit by US officials.

US officials have been there since May 24 to look into the food needs of the country, which is believed to be affecting a quarter of its 24 million population.

Last Friday, four U.S. senators wrote a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, expressing concern about North Korea's appeal for food aid.

"Although we are appalled by the chronic food shortages in North Korea, we share the suspicions of the South Korean government that Kim Jong il's sudden efforts to secure food aid is motivated not by any meaningful deterioration of the humanitarian situation in his country, but is rather an attempt to bolster his regime's legitimacy," the senators wrote.


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