Children in flood-ravaged DPRK face ‘second wave of danger’ as winter rapidly closes in – UNICEF

After two months of intense flooding, the Democratic Republic of Korea (DPRK) is now facing another looming danger as a severe winter is closing with thousands of children still in need of urgent assistance, according to the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) and partner agency Save the Children.

According to Oyunsaihan Dendevnorov, UNICEF Representative in the DPRK: "Thousands of children are suffering, and the impending winter will trigger a second disaster if we do not increase assistance for children and families."

Ms. Dendevnorov added in a joint press release that children's suffering will get worse without more attention, because "they have already lost everything: clean water, food, medicine and shelter."

"The situation right now is urgent and on an enormous scale not seen here in decades. That's why we need the international community to step up and immediately increase funding for this emergency response," said Paolo Fattori, Save the Children Program Director from the capital, Pyongyang.

UNICEF reported that nearly 70,000 people are homeless, with another 600,000 in need of help because of the floods, which have already killed 130 people. "Without more urgent assistance, children are likely to endure even more suffering," stated UNICEF and Save the Children.

"Come the end of October we're likely to see sub-zero temperatures and snowfall as winter sets in, and winter can be extremely long and bitter here," explained Ms. Fattori.

UNICEF and Save the Children have already delivered humanitarian aid to DPRK, including emergency shelters, purification tablets and hygiene kits to assist the victims of flooding.

There is still a lot to be done, such as repairing broken water systems, and distributing basic items like food, which is why humanitarian agencies are appealing for $28.2 million in funding to meet the immediate and long-term needs of the people in DPRK.

Source: UN News Centre

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