Seoul gives go-ahead to group’s relief aid for North

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Seoul gives go-ahead to group’s relief aid for North

Seoul gave its final nod yesterday to a South Korean non-governmental group’s relief aid to flood-stricken North Korea.

Christian charity group World Vision had planned to send 500 tons of flour to the heavily-hit cities of Anju and Kaechon in early September, but the Seoul government’s request for a form explaining how and to whom the planned aid goods will be distributed has been delaying the aid shipment.

As World Vision has recently submitted the required form, the government finally approved the aid provision slated for Sept. 11, a government official said.

World Vision had lamented the government’s rule-bound stance delaying emergency relief aid to the North, which reportedly lost hundreds of lives in recent floods.

The official said the government has also approved another local private aid group’s plan to send 30 million won (US$26,478) worth of bread to nurseries and primary schools in the northern part of the North.

The government strictly regulates shipments of goods and human travel across the border with the North, with a special caution placed upon the shipments of rice, cement or flour for fear of misuse by the communist country.

The Seoul government has not offered or pledged to offer relief goods in response to recent heavy floods in the North. Yonhap
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