North Korea Seeks U.N. Help After Foot and Mouth Outbreak

But Pyongyang remains unresponsive to an offer of help from South Korea

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North Korea on Wednesday appealed to the United Nations for help with an outbreak of foot and mouth disease among the country’s livestock, as it failed to respond to offers of help from its estranged neighbor South Korea.

Pyongyang made its request to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization, and the U.N. aims to send a group of experts to North Korea to help the country cope with its lack of vaccines or disinfectantsThe Daily Telegraph reports. The highly infectious disease attacks cloven-hoofed animals, and can have serious implications for farming.

The first outbreak of the disease among pigs in Pyongyang was reported in January. Since then 360 pigs have died and 2,900 have been slaughtered. The South Korean government offered vaccines and help on Monday, as well as an offer to discuss further humanitarian assistance to North Korea.

An official from the South Korean government stated that “We will take the necessary measures in line with the North’s response.” However, they have yet to receive any reply.