The issue of providing humanitarian assistance to North Korea was raised as North Korea’s food situation deteriorated. The R.O.K. government began providing humanitarian aid to the North in 1995, when North Korea requested the international community for humanitarian relief.
The R.O.K. government, under the recognition that humanitarian assistance helps protect and promote the social rights of the North Korean people and that it restores a Korean National Community in the long-term, has pursued providing aid in comprehensive consideration of inter-Korean relations, the humanitarian situation in North Korea, and the South’s fiscal condition.
So far, the government has provided humanitarian assistance to North Korea either directly or indirectly through NGOs and international organizations.
The R.O.K. government provided relief aid including rice and medicine in response to a disaster in North Korea and is rendering aid for the most disadvantaged members of society including infants, toddlers, pregnant women, and the disabled. The government seeks to substantially help the North Korean people by comprehensively supporting agro-livestock, forestry, and environmental projects.
The government has provided KRW 117.7 billion through the Inter-Korean Cooperation Fund to support infants, toddlers, and the physically challenged, as well as healthcare and forest restoration projects by NGOs. The private organizations rendered KRW 718.3 billion worth of nutritious meals, medicines, agricultural materials, seedlings, etc.
The government has so far provided KRW 274.3 billion for the international community’s humanitarian aid to the North, including vaccines for infants and toddlers and essential medicines through UNICEF and nutritious meals for infants, toddlers, and pregnant women through WFP.
The government is striving to maximize the influence of humanitarian assistance to North Korea and to secure the transparency of distribution in order to build a public consensus. The government seeks to build a foundation for unification and improve inter-Korean relations through consistent and continued humanitarian aid to North Korea.