Five UN agencies made the joint appeal on Monday.
About five UN agencies on Monday issued an urgent appeal for $29.4 million to meet the “life-saving needs’’ of the North Korean people.
“In 2013, a total of 147 million dollars is needed to respond to key humanitarian priorities of which only 26.8 per cent has been received so far,’’ the agencies said.
The World Food Programme, UNICEF, WHO, Food and Agriculture Organisation, and the UN Population Fund issued the appeal on Monday.
“As a result of the persisting deficit, agencies are unable to respond effectively to the humanitarian needs, out of which the most critical and life-saving ones urgently require 29.4 million dollars,’’ they said.
Current economic sanctions on North Korea exclude humanitarian assistance.
Meanwhile, South Korea’s Foreign Minister, Yun Byung Se, said in Seoul that his country was still open to dialogue with the North, the Yonhap News Agency reported, in spite of threats from Pyongyang to close the jointly run Kaesong industrial complex.
Managers from South Korea began leaving the industrial park at the weekend following a decision by their government to withdraw them.
“We decided to bring back all the remaining personnel in Kaesong for the protection of our people,’’ Yun said.
Six days before operations came to a halt at Kaesong on April 9, the North blocked South Korean personnel and supplies from entering the complex, but allowed people to leave.
Tensions have been high on the Korean Peninsula since North Korea carried out its third nuclear test on February12, triggering condemnation from the international community and resulting in more sanctions against the reclusive state.