The UN’s rights report warns of North Korea’s risk of famine

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Pyongyang is under several sets of international sanctions over its nuclear and ballistic missile programs, which have seen rapid progress under Kim.

Quintana said such restrictions should be eased to protect the country’s most vulnerable to severe food shortages.

“The most vulnerable children and the elderly are at risk of starvation,” he said.

“Sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council should be reviewed and eased as necessary to facilitate both humanitarian and life-saving assistance.”

The report comes about three months after the UN Food and Agriculture Organization said North Korea was facing a food shortage of about 860,000 tonnes this year and could experience a “hard lean time”.

Pyongyang has stayed away from talks on its nuclear program since the collapse of a second summit between Kim and then US President Donald Trump in Hanoi and has rejected South Korean efforts to revive the dialogue.

Under President Joe Biden, the United States has repeatedly stated its willingness to meet with North Korean officials, while saying it will seek disarmament.

But this week, Kim blamed Washington for tensions on the peninsula and insisted that Pyongyang’s weapons were for self-defense and not aimed at any particular country.

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