The BBC reported that North Koreans testified in interviews that their neighbors starved to death because of a lack of food.
On the 14th (local time), the BBC announced that it interviewed three ordinary people living in villages near the border between Pyongyang and China with the support of Daily NK , a media specializing in North Korea .
They said they were afraid that they would starve to death or be executed for violating the law after the border closure between North Korea and China.
Experts said the situation in North Korea was메이저놀이터 at its worst since the ‘Arduous March’ in the 1990s, the BBC reported.
According to the BBC , a woman named Jiyeon (all names have been changed) from Pyongyang said she knew three of her next-door neighbors had starved to death in her house. She said he had heard that people either took their lives in her house or went into the mountains to die because they couldn’t live.
Chan Ho, a construction worker living near the Chinese border, said five people in his village starved to death because the food supply was so low.
Myeong-sook, a merchant who sells contraband Chinese goods, said three-quarters of the products sold at the marketplace used to come from China, but they are now empty and most of the imports have disappeared. He says his family has never had so little food to eat, he struggles to feed his kids, and at one point he thought he was going to die in his sleep after not eating for two days.
North Korean economist Peter Ward said, “It is very worrisome to see an ordinary middle-class neighbor dying of starvation. Hannah Song of the NKDB
, which documents human rights violations in North Korea, also said, “I have hardly heard of cases of starvation in the past 10 to 15 years. It reminds me of the most difficult period in North Korean history,” she said. According to the South Korean government, before the COVID-19 outbreak, more than 1,000 people a day crossed the Yalu River to escape to China. However, Myeong-suk said, “No one crosses the river now, as people will be severely punished even if they come close to it.” Chanho also said, “Every day it becomes more difficult to live. “If you make one wrong move, you will be executed,” he said. “We are trapped here, waiting to die.” The BBC pointed out that Chairman Kim Jong-un has also hinted at the seriousness of the situation by publicly mentioning the food crisis, but he is still prioritizing nuclear weapons development.
North Korea said it conducted a test launch of 63 ballistic missiles last year, and the cost was estimated at over 500 million dollars (approximately 637.5 billion won). This is more than enough to make up for North Korea’s annual grain shortage, the BBC added.