Thousands of people evacuated in North Korea as heavy rains destroyed their homes


Seoul, South Korea-Heavy rains in northeastern North Korea have destroyed or flooded 1,170 homes, forcing 5,000 residents to evacuate to safe areas, North Korea’s state television reported.

Hundreds of hectares (acres) of farmland were flooded or washed away and many bridges were destroyed by this week’s heavy rains in South Hamgyong Province, according to a television broadcast on Thursday. The footage showed a house submerged to a red brick roof, a severed bridge over muddy water, and a swollen river.

The broadcast did not mention casualties. The north east coast region said heavy rains would continue in the coming days.

North Korea’s summer rains often cause serious damage to agriculture and other sectors due to poor drainage, deforestation and aging infrastructure in poor countries. External surveillance groups have not detected a large amount of signs of hunger or social unrest, but bad weather is raising concerns about North Korea’s food security.

Prime Minister Kim Jong-un said in June that his country’s food situation was “tensed.” He previously admitted that the COVID-19 pandemic, US-led sanctions, and last year’s massive typhoons and floods put his country in a “worst-ever” crisis.

Associated Press