South Korea offers flood ravaged North aid

SEOUL (BestGrowthStock) – South Korea offered on Tuesday 10 billion won ($8.4 million) in emergency aid to North Korea to help with recovery from floods that ravaged the destitute state, a government official said.

The offer, if accepted by Pyongyang, would be the first large scale aid from Seoul after the sinking of one of the South’s navy ships in March that it blamed on a submarine attack by the North.

Seoul’s offer came a few hours after Washington unveiled additional sanctions against the North in the wake of the incident that killed 46 sailors.

The offer was made through the South Korean Red Cross and includes emergency food, relief materials and first aid kits, a South Korean Unification Ministry official said.

Heavy rains in July and August hit the North’s northern region bordering China and its eastern provinces, forcing thousands from their homes and putting farmland under water.

The United States expanded financial sanctions against the North amid signs that the isolated state, under intense economic pressure stemming from international condemnation for its provocations, is hoping for an early resumption of arms talks.

South Korea had all but shut the door on dialogue with the North after the sinking of its navy ship, demanding an apology and a pledge not to repeat armed aggression, but it has come under pressure domestically to offer humanitarian aid.

(Reporting by Jack Kim; Editing by Jeremy Laurence and Miral Fahmy)

South Korea offers flood ravaged North aid