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Seoul to Resume Aid to N. Korea but Doesn't Set Date

21 September 2017

Such provocations have sparked strong disapproval from the global community, especially from the United States and Japan.

The South has been keen to boost inter-Korean ties since liberal President Moon Jae-in took office in May, but North Korea carried out its sixth nuke test on September 3, drawing a ninth U.N. Security Council resolution since 2006.

About $4.5m of nutrition-rich supplies will be distributed to children and pregnant women through the UN World Food Programme.

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The WFP and UNICEF had approached the South Korean government in May and July this year to contribute in aiding North Korea, the statement added. The government will decide when to provide the aid considering the state of relations between the rival Koreas, the ministry said.

The Unification Ministry explained that the latest decision is in accordance with the government's basic stance that it separates the issue of humanitarian aid for the North with political situations.

Since its fourth nuclear test a month later, North Korea has conducted two more nuclear tests and flight-tested a slew of new missile systems, including developmental ICBMs that could potentially reach deep into the USA mainland when perfected. It is believed that 28% of children in North Korea have chronic malnutrition. Realmeter, a South Korean polling organisation, said the measure had dented Moon's popularity, although his approval rating is still high at just over 65%.

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The last time the South had sent aid to the North was in December 2015 through the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) under ex-president Park Geun-hye.

Moon will meet Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Trump later on Thursday on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly, where North Korea was expected to be the core agenda item.

"There is a saying that goes: "Even when dogs bark, the parade goes on", Ri said in televised remarks to reporters in front of a hotel near the United Nations headquarters in NY.

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On Sept 3, Pyongyang detonated its sixth nuclear device, seen as the most powerful ever conducted by the Asian country.

Seoul to Resume Aid to N. Korea but Doesn't Set Date